The dangers of travel

open your eyes...

Travel Safely tips with the Blogsherpa team in our 2nd Blog Carnival.

In the past five years of travelling, I know I’ve seen more than I remember and I remember more than I’ve ever seen. There is something magic about being a traveller (and a predominantly solo one at that) – where you get access to the world, to creativity, to inspiration, that you just can’t find on home soil. But there are certainly dangers, risks and unfortunate situations that should be avoided.

People talk about the ‘dangers of travelling,’ they talk about being robbed, held up at gunpoint, abused, ripped off and finding yourself in the middle of a countries troubles completely innocently, where you as a white western traveller should have never been in the first place. Just look at Bangkok now for example.

You should always read the travel warnings in the countries that you are visiting, but you should never let those warnings stop you from going wherever it is you want to go, but do take care. I live in a country that the Australian government has a ‘do not travel’ danger rating against, and I’ve never had a problem at all.

These dangers do all exist, sure, but for me they are not the biggest danger when it comes to travelling. In earlier blogs, I have written about the dangers of solo travel, and tricks to get around them, I have also recounted scary stories I’ve heard of travellers whilst on the road. But to me the biggest danger when it comes to travelling is definitely becoming complacent.

The man who follows the crowd will usually get no further than the crowd.
The man who walks alone is likely to find himself in places no one has ever been.
~ Alan Ashley-Pitt ~

Being a solo traveller, or travelling with your partner – it can become easy to get complacent after a while. You start missing things from home, the comfort of your family, the nights out with your friends, the safety and the familiarity of mundane day-to-day life (this one is easy to shake) – you miss your comfort food, your television shows, and you really do miss out on a lot of that familiar contact – birthdays, Christmases, babies, weddings, celebrations – and you begin to get complacent.

It is easy to forget how lucky you are to have the opportunity to travel, to be exposed to the world in all of its ignorance, beauty and wisdom. I have been there. I get frustrated and I get afraid. I get bored and I close my eyes. This is the biggest danger of long-term travel… and the biggest challenge. To keep your eyes open, because the new and exciting things that places have to offer, become every day life quickly and you become desensitized. Constant reminders of your place in the world and becoming involved in the community, the charity, the support networks around the world are the best way to stave off complacency. Give yourself an action and a reason to show that you care – and you will travel safely, not only in mind but in body.

Be brave.

If you do nothing unexpected,nothing unexpected happens.
~ Fay Weldon ~

Barefoot inked, blogged, aware and safe in travel.

2 Responses to “The dangers of travel”
  1. Beautiful post, and nice twist on the theme! I’ve never heard that Ashley-Pitt quote before, it’s lovely.

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