by Lynn Kim Do

Why should you travel?

Here is a picture of home. Of my city. Lovely, isn't it? But sometimes, you can get sick of your own bed, too. So if you have an intense desire to leave. If you desire to escape. To go away. With the intention of that one thing to be fixed by the time you get back. Then you're going to be very disappointed.

If it's one thing I learned in my years of pursuing different spaces, sitting in airports, meticulously setting itineraries, eating peanuts, eating things I never new existed, seeing paintings I've only read in textbooks, or speaking to people with experiences miles away from mine and just as different, traveling will only answer the arbitrary. In fact, traveling is the answer when your soul feels jaded, compromised, or half empty or even 3/4 empty. Travel will give you what you need whether or not you knew exactly what you actually need. It might not even be specific. It also won't make too much sense right away.

And just like trying sushi, you may not like it the first time around. I guess, it's also like having sex for the first time. It can be painful. And it can be expensive (this one is about traveling not sex). But I know that I kept trying. I kept going. From the Dominican Republic's resort to Country Hopping in Europe, I have quite evolved in all levels of travel. So now that I'm back in New York, I find myself asking, well, myself a few questions, just to check in. I always do.

“Well Lynn, did you get what you came for?”
My soul says yes. Why? I'm not too sure. I know I miss home and that's the indication, the success flag, if you will. I know that when I stepped my foot back in my home city, I will be the right amount of different, and maybe the more appropriate word is "inspiration", to take my life back on. Nothing will change around me when my space feels all too familiar. My room will still be messy af. My fridge will still be lacking enough soy sauce, like it always has. And my hustle will still be there, probably more aggressively and with no welcome home hug. But that's okay. I will be different. And that’s what I wanted.

“What's different?”
I learned patience. I learned from the Europeans that relaxing is just as important as grinding. To slow the fuck down. Enjoy it. Put your feet up. You deserve it. I deserve it. No guilt trips necessary. I also learned that GMOs make people fat. Don't be stupid. It's the truth. Van Gogh taught me that creativity isn't about being original. It's about taking everything you are inspired by, copy it, and make it yours. Make it yours with a definite opinion.

And I know what you're don't need to travel to learn that. But I will tell you what the internet or your local experience won't give you. It won’t give the authenticity of an experience. It won’t give you the layers and layers delicious food, beautiful people, foreign languages, and memories that accompany these lessons. And one evening while you’re trying to desperately figure something out, one tiny detail of your travels will help decipher something. It will continue to reward you. Over and over again.