What makes you love travel? To be honest, I’ve never been quite sure. On some trips it’s been the joy of photographing famous sights, the thrill of pushing myself to do something new, or visiting distant friends. On other occasions it’s just been the feeling on the sun on my back that I have treasured.
This week, I saw a photograph of a friend’s garden from her house in Brazil. It was a simple image; just her dog lying down. But something about it hit me, and made me realise in a single moment what it is that I love about travelling.
It was the grass that did it. It was that dark green kind of grass, the stuff with rough, thick blades that I’ve walked on in tropical countries where our soft, daisy-speckled green stuff refuses to grow without intense effort. It struck me that after looking out of the window at the manicured village green for the past few months, I’d forgotten this sort of grass even existed.
This might all sound quite silly. But a vague memory washed over me; a recollection that I’d laid on this grass somewhere before, plucking at the blades and wondering why it was different there to how it was at home. It doesn’t really matter why, of course, and one isn’t any better than the other. What mattered was that it was different.
And there you have it: Travelling shows me ‘other’.