When travel connects you

One of the great advantages of travelling is that you learn so much more about other people’s culture and lifestyle when you visit their country. It’s also the making of friends or that great conversation you had with a local stranger that stays with you after you leave. In light of the earthquake that occurred in Nepal this week, this topic has been on my mind all week and was a topic that I wanted to post about.

I had never been to a country before where natural disasters have struck and left thousands homeless or have caused so much destruction where entire villages are destroyed. I haven’t been to Nepal. What caused the most worry for me this week was the safety of a Nepalese friend I had made whilst travelling in India (& his family). From the streets to Jaipur, to tea on the balcony of a temple and then him organising the scariest transport ride I have taken so far on a bike rickshaw, the afternoon interaction was all we had. We had stayed in touch through emails once every few months and him telling me about another Indian festival they were celebrating.

It’s not to say that I don’t care about countries that aren’t my own when natural disasters happen but I think you have an even bigger emotional attachment when it’s a country you’ve been to or know someone from the country affected. And I think this is a great thing. It makes humanity more connected and it shows that human effort pulled on a huge scale has the ability to make positive change.

I emailed my friend the day after I heard about the earthquakes and am still awaiting his reply. Fingers crossed.

-S.

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