Here’s another great post from the Dollar Vigilante. They always have a lot of great information on their website. I’ve been a subscriber for a while now.
I really couldn’t agree more with his post. I’ve been a traveler since I was born. 🙂
My father used to work as an engineer (before he said the hell with it all and started fishing). 🙂
He used to take on contract jobs for all the big firms. Sperry, Northrup Grumman, Corning, etc. I remember living in Boston, Rochester, Syracuse, Phoenix, LA, El Paso. Lots of other places in between I don’t remember. I was born in Minneapolis. My brother was born in East Hampton (we were staying on grandpas boat).
For a while we all lived in one of those old style cab over campers. Mom, dad, me, my little brother, the dog and the cat. We would live at a campground for a few months at most while dad did whatever job he was contracted to do.
We finally settled down in Florida. My dad took a job with Honeywell. Maybe because it was time for me to start school. I really don’t know for sure. My dad found the love of his life, (the schooner Island Girl), and my parents got divorced.
By then the travel bug was in my veins and I’ve been infected for life! I LOVE to travel!!
My grandmother did too. She was always off somewhere interesting and exciting and she would bring us little presents when she came to visit. Sometimes I was lucky enough to go with her.
I remember one time she took me skiing in Aspen Colorado. I was about 13. I had a blast! Another time she took me (along with her sisters) on a long road trip to pick out a boarding school for me. (I was a bad girl)
I refused them all. I just didn’t think I would fit in at any of them.
Good thing for me! I wound up going to school with the Oceanics out of New York City instead of any of those nice, fancy, expensive schools my grandmother wanted for me.
That experience changed my life forever. I wound up sailing around the world on large traditional sailing ships. I LOVED it!!I decided I wanted to be a ship captain, sail around the world and get paid for it. My grandmother never got over that I didn’t want to be a doctor anymore.
I wanted to keep sailing and traveling and never go home. I did wind up staying after for a while. I tried to find a job working my way back home on a ship. I was only 16 and didn’t have any seamans’ papers yet, so that didn’t work out very well. 🙁
I wound up talking my way into a position on board an old Thames sailing barge in London. The CIV was the name of it.
I had a blast!! The guys on there were such a fun group. I was supposed to cook and keep the place clean while they got it ready to sail across the Atlantic to the US. I don’t know if they ever made it. I had to fly back to the US before they got it ready. 🙁
I learned so much on that trip. MUCH more than I ever could have or would have learned in any kind of normal classroom environment.
We had class on the ship. We learned about things like navigation and seamanship. We learned them by DOING them. Most things we learned outside of class. For example, I learned how to work as part of a team. I learned to be a good shipmate and how everyone on board is there for a good reason and just as important as anyone else there.
We had to keep a journal (good practice). We also had a class called ‘cultural studies’. When we went ashore we learned about the countries and the people we visited. We learned the languages of the countries we were due to visit.
I learned how to communicate better, sometimes even non-verbally. I learned how to be flexible and more accepting of how things were instead of how I thought they should be.
I learned how other people dealt with the same kinds of things we do at home but in their own ways. I learned that my way (or my countrys’ way) was not always the best way.
I learned that most people are basically the same, wherever they live, they all want/need the same basic things… food, water, love, connection, a home, etc. We’re not all that different. 🙂
I learned there is such a great, big, wonderful world out there. I learned about myself that I never want to stop learning and exploring.
Travel is SUCH a great teacher, in so many ways. I encourage anyone and everyone to get out there and DO IT! 🙂