I believe in traveling

Johanna - Jesup, Iowa
Entered on March 6, 2008
Age Group: Under 18
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I believe in the importance of traveling. I’m currently spending a year as an exchange student in a small town in Iowa and during the year I’ve learned a lot about myself and who I am as an individual. I believe leaving my secure environment in Sweden and the friends and family I’ve been surrounded by for the past 17 years has forced me to mature and look at life differently. For the first time ever I’ve truly been all by myself and have come to realize how much I’m really capable of.

Growing up in a bigger city I have to admit that I at first was very disappointed when I got my placement for my year abroad. I realized that I was about to spend almost a year in the middle of nowhere and I started to regret my decision.

Sure, adjusting to life in a small country town was difficult and took a while but as the months has gone by, I have come to love this place and the people I’ve gotten to know. I can’t imagine life without them and I’m going to carry the memories with me for the rest of my life.

Traveling has always been a big part of my life. I realize that I’m a very privileged person who has gotten to experience many different cultures and countries. I believe that traveling is incredibly important. It helps people overcome their fears and get a better understanding of different cultures. You meet new, interesting people and realize that they aren’t as different from yourself as you first expected.

I understand that traveling might not be an option for many families due to economical shortcomings, but in the end money is not really what it’s about.

For me traveling is not all about staying at the fanciest hotel and lying on the beach for a week. I want to experience more and learn about the history of the towns I visit. I want to know what the every day life looks like for the people I meet and how their expectations of life differ from my own. I want to broaden my view of the world, meet new people and learn about things I never knew existed.

I will probably never have the time or the money to travel all the places I would like to see in this world, but I will do my best do experience as much as possible. You only live once and I want to see what’s out there. Traveling is important for personal growth and this I believe.