Travel can make you appreciate your home(town) more.
I read something along this line before. I didn’t think i would agree, but i did — and still do. You may be dubious, like how is that possible? The reason we travel, go on vacation, and take time off is to get away from stifling routine, to be refreshed, or to escape ‘reality’ albeit temporarily, isn’t it?
Go see the world is one of my big dreams: to visit as many cities and countries as possible. Problem is, i still can’t manage to enjoy plane ride — i mostly sleep onboard. And if 10~11-hour flight has already suck so much life out of me and got me so out of shape, i don’t think i could bear flying for more than a day to reach the other part of the world…
No matter how far and how long we travel, there’s always a place called home. And nothing beats the comfort level provided by my own bed-pillows-blankie at home — it is what i miss the most whenever i am out of town.
So, some of the little things i’ve come to appreciate (more) thanks to some of my jaunts in recent years are as follows:
A trip to Vietnam made me tolerate the chaos and noise-pollution level of Jakarta’s roads. Ou yes, The Big Durian is infamous for its ubiquitous traffic jams that test not only patient meter but also emotional stability, yet surprisingly i found it a tad more bearable post my Hanoi-Hua Lu/Tam Coc-Halong Bay tour.
A weekend getaway to Pulau Seribu made me forever grateful for the abundant supply of colorless, odorless, tasteless water i used to take for granted. It isn’t drinkable directly from the tap, and while clear, smell-free doesn’t equal clean, it’s way better than having to see and use cloudy, brackish water all the time.
Island hopping in Belitung* proves that 1) in Indonesia there exists a clean, orderly city — such quality is thoroughly possible; and 2) there’s no need to go far or across the border to bask in sea sun and sand. Indonesia is an archipelago and Bali is not the only ‘heavenly’ option. I still prefer and recommend Lombok to Bali though i heard that it is not as clean as it used to be. I went there around a decade ago and hope i could revisit and explore more of what Bali’s twin sister has in store.
If you’re looking for coastal pristine beauty, consider these two lesser-known islands. If you’re the type who enjoys hours of reading and sunbathing on ‘private’ islets, do check Negeri Laskar Pelangi out.
Lastly, visiting a four-season city/country during the colder months made me miss the always-summer weather my hometown offers. Technically we have two seasons here — dry and rainy — but it stays very warm, humid, and mostly sunny all year ’round. It’s not without ups though; if anything, i don’t have to own different sets of makeup, clothing, skincare routine yada yada yada to match the changing season 😉
Maybe i simply aren’t used to it yet since i’ve only lived and stayed in tropical countries thus far. It wasn’t my first winter, and while I have always fancied the idea of layering up, now i think it’s easier to cool down than to warm up. Likes? I could skip the use of antiperspirant and my face stayed matte all day without powder, lol.
That said, i don’t think i’ll stop cursing at the craziness of Jakarta’s jams and road conditions or at the heat. Not one way or another yet.
The grass may look greener on the other side, but let’s just say that we have better soil over here 🙂
Now, back to real-life… can i not??
*) post written in Indonesian