Love Is In The Air
I’ve been writing a lot of love posts recently. Not really sure why. I think maybe because spring has sprung here in Rio, the weather is beautiful, and it’s about time to start falling in love with the earth, the sky, and the city. As I walk around the city in the evenings, the smoky smells of churrasco fill the air as music blasts from open-air bars and restaurants. It’s starting to feel romantic here, at the very least.
I’ve began to notice recently that as a traveler, I sometimes get this feeling of falling in love with everything I see – landscapes, buildings, colors, foods… Name a topic and I’ll probably exclaim, with huge enthusiasm, “I LOVE ____” (insert name of person, place, food, activity here). I love Mexican food. I love the churches in Prague. I love thrift shopping and new friends and train rides. My eyes are so enthralled by new sights and my palate enchanted by new tastes. I am always more than eager to grab dinner with new friends on the road, or add them on Facebook once we’ve spent the day and a good chunk of the night together. Let’s face it: I’m in love with the world.
But am I the only person who feels this way? Heck no. Anyone who has traveled will tell you the same – that the world is something to love and be loved by. Most of the time the world opens its arms to the lone traveler, and things often have a way of working out in a surprising and life-changing way. Take for example my life in Brazil. Even though I don’t do much traveling while I’m here (living/food/rent in the city is incredibly expensive), I realize that my city is one of the most amazing in the world, and one in which I still have a lot of exploring to do. Even trying a new restaurant or going to a new park is a huge accomplishment for me. Why? Because even though I’m not “traveling,” per se, I’m using that spirit of travel and discovery to go to new places and fall in love with them.
Or maybe I’m just a 20-year-old girl with big dreams and a lot on her mind.
Love As A Concept
Do you think I’m oversimplifying the word “love”? Perhaps I am. Perhaps I am using a word too personal, too emotional to describe my fever for adventuring into the unknown. But no, I don’t think this is the case at all. I think that there are different kinds of love, some strong and romantic, some passionate and determined. Consequently, I would say that the feeling I get from traveling is certainly a form of this overarching feeling – travel is my number one happiness in life and is the reason why I get excited about living every day.
If there’s one thing I’ve learned about love, it’s that you have to be willing to offer love to something before you can truly appreciate everything it does for you. Traveling is no exception – if you’re willing to fall in love and be amazed by everything you see, you’ll never be disappointed during your adventures. Don’t be afraid to put your heart into your travels, because this too is an artistic outlet that should be cherished and appreciated throughout life.
Love is in the air here in Rio, but it’s a different kind of love than the mushy-gushy PDA romance that is ever-so-obvious on the streets of this city. A love of travel, of exploration, of sunshine and happiness and trying unexpected things is growing, once again, in my traveler’s heart. My eyes are sparkling with the hope of meeting new people, tasting weird foods, and seeing places within the city that I have yet to experience. Even though my immediate travel plans are still in the works, just thinking about discovering a world full of mystery, nature, and beauty has me falling in love. Again.
Would you say the feeling of travel is comparable to the feeling of love? Do you think it’s different? I want to know! Tell me your stories in the comments.
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