Tuesday, May 18, 2021

Travel Tuesday - Travel Outside Your Comfort Zone


 Drafting the recent piece on grandparents, I was reminded that one of the lessons I learned from my grandmother was to take myself outside of my comfort zone.  She had me drive her to places she wanted to see, that were outside of my grandfather's comfort zone.  She boldly went to Alaska in her 80's, basically saying she'd sooner die enjoying the trip, than sitting safely at home wishing she had gone.  

Any place where I don't speak the language is stretch.  If I work at it, I can muddle through in French, a little bit it Italian, and a tiny bit of Spanish.  But not mutch.  Germany turned out to be easy, virtually anyone under 40 speaks at least some English.  Greece was a real challenge.  The alphabet is different, I tried my normal preparation with audio language tutoring and found Greek impenetrable.  In two weeks I think I got out hello, and thank you maybe five times.  Yet it was an amazing experience.  In Athens english was common, we got out into the countryside on that trip, and none of us spoke modern Greek and English was rare.  

I am fascinated Japan and South Korea.  They are outside of my comfort zone.  Languages that are entirely different.  I need to remind myself, that it is better to go outside of my comfort zone, than to die wishing I had.   

17 comments:

  1. I agree. While I only ever took three years of French and remember some...a language never stops me from going places. And if English is not a second language, we have had tour guides take us around.

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    1. The average three year old speaks better French than I do, the average three year old born and raised in Paris.

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  3. What great lessons you learned from your grandmother. I like to stray from my comfort zone, although I do have a line I won't cross into my panic zone.

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  4. In my memory outside your comfort zone makes a great and memorable travel experience. It may not be easy but you can learn an awful lot. As for trying your hand at the local lingo, we stopped as we learnt if you speak in their language, they will reply in their language, so we go no further than hello, please and thankyou. Even in small Japanese towns, we got by.

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    1. I am looking forward to more adventures

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  5. I agree that sometimes language can be a barrier, but stepping outside your comfort zone makes for a far more interesting experience.

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    1. Now to remember what my comfort zone is after being home for so long

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  6. We went to Japan but with a tour group precisely because of the language barrier. We had a great time and saw fabulous things. Non-Japanese-speaking friends of ours went to Japan on their own and didn't have a good time. My philosophy is -- if you're going to spend a ton of money to go somewhere, make it an enjoyable, easy experience, not a test of patience, nerves and coping abilities.

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    1. Sounds wise, I have never done the organized tour route.

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  7. better brush up on your "philly-speak"; we have a language all our own! ;-b

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    1. Should be fun, J went to college there, back when Franklin was still around

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  8. At work is a framed meme saying "Life begins outside your comfort zone"

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