When it comes to travel, there are so many facets of this great passion of mankind. First of all, there is the theoretical origin of this pastime. The prevailing theory regarding the origin of travel as a pastime, as with just about any behavior of any animal, is evolution. The desire to explore is thought to be a survival mechanism, as it acts as a force that compels us to find supplies. While society has evolved beyond our wildest dreams, our bodies and, therefore, our brains, are largely the same, so we still feel the need to learn and explore, but we don’t usually need to, so we do it for fun, instead. If you’re feeling that feeling we call wanderlust, it’s your DNA urging you toward something you don’t really need, but where’s the harm in it?
I think it’s also worth noting the kinds of travel we do. We travel for business, which is, in my mind, an abstraction of that survival instinct from our ancient ancestors. We’re not trying to survive the wilderness, of course, but we’re trying to survive within a society, and both require a lot of work. Traveling for work, just as with any other work related tasks, can be tedious and a less than ideal use of your time, but it still enables you to reap many of the benefits of recreational travel. A simple change of scenery, for example, is great for your mental health. Then, there’s the vacation. Vacations are another symptom of modern capitalist society, but this time a more positive aspect. In essence, when the daily grind gets to be too much, we get to take a break from it for awhile. And, this usually occurs in Summer, so we go for a swim to beat the heat.(And, paradoxically, enjoy the warm weather.) Then, of course, you have thrill seeking travel ventures. Some of us elect to save our Ugg boots for fashion week and put on some flippers for shark week. What I mean by this, in case you haven’t heard, is that some people actually choose to be lowered into shark infested waters inside of a cage, and they do this for fun, if you can believe it. People also travel simply to interact with other cultures. This can be an enlightening experience, but it can also be just plain fun. By the same token, sampling the local cuisine of far off foreign lands is truly fulfilling. (And, just filling!) In short, there are a wide array of reasons we like to travel, and why we sometimes must. It’s truly a case of “there’s something for everybody.” Next time you’re feeling wanderlust, remember all that this world has to offer and treat yourself to a one of a kind experience.