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Traveling Habits

The World is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.  ~Saint Augustine

Nicole Piper and Aunt Heather Piper in Ireland 2005
Me & Nicole at the Heineken Brewery, Ireland June 2005

Having an adoration for seeing the world is ingrained in me.  I am fortunate enough to have parents who feel the same way, always encouraging my brother, sister and myself to see the world.  That’s one thing I really truly appreciate and admire about mom and dad.  There was never a time they forbade us or threw up roadblocks when the opportunity arose to see different destinations, within the states or abroad.

Always trusting how we were raised, as good hearted, responsible individuals, my parents reinforced being safe and using common sense.  Let’s face it, common sense is a very useful and powerful tool.  Mom and dad were never ignorant to the fact that there is crime and violence everywhere in the world, not to mention less than acceptable living conditions and sicknesses, but they have always believed that traveling was essential to growing.  They know there is a world of history, art, culture and just plain beauty, not to mention the adventure of it all.

You know it’s funny how different people travel.  Being a no muss, no fuss traveler, I always trek around with just the necessities, minimal bags.  Avoiding hold ups like digging for travel documents is the key.  I try to have those ready and on hand, just the essential documents, not the printout of a book from an email and all confirmations, just my travel destinations highlighted for quick reference.  Moving through transportation terminals such as airports and train stations, I move my tooshy and try not to dilly dally.  I am that person who walks up the escalators, walks on the people mover, the one who will not drive around for an hour looking for the closest parking spot, and the one who will check in all baggage so I don’t take additional time boarding and unboarding.  Not to mention the little things like staying out of the way and not holding up lines.  If I am not sure of my direction or need to get situated, I get out of everyone’s way until I am ready to proceed.  Carrying a piece of fruit and some sort of nuts or granola bars for snacking, I avoid stopping to get in lines to eat.  This helps me consume minimal food during my adventures so I don’t need to stop and use the restroom facilities.

Me and Kyle touring the caves of West Virginia - Aunt Heather Piper
Me & Kyle touring the caves of West Virginia with Casey 2011

Then there is the opposite of me, those who travel nothing like what I’ve described.  I’m not saying one is better over the other, just making pure observation.  But I do need to call out those individuals who seem to need a manual on etiquette for traveling or, at the very least, common sense.  Yes, you know who you are.  Again, I’m sure over the years I’ve broken a few of those rules myself, unintentionally, but I do try to take others into consideration with my actions during my journey.

I was on a flight not too long ago and I saw a man trying to push his huge carry on, that barely fit into the overhead might I add, in front of another bag.  And I mean he tried.  Common sense must have escaped him or better, he must not have checked it at baggage.  Did anyone ever tell him that you can’t fit 10 pounds of something in a five pound bucket?  Apparently he missed the memo.  Really I don’t care except he held up boarding of the plane with his actions.  What made this even better, they announced before we boarded the plane that it was a full flight and they recommended that anyone with larger carry on luggage to check it in.  So this gentlemen had the chance to check in his attaché and chose against it.  But now he is pushing his bag into another in the overhead.  Gets even better.  Not all the overhead space was taken.  All he needed to do is walk a few feet down the isle to an open bin.  Problem solved!  Then he could have made his way to his seat and let everyone follow suit.  Do you think it occurred to him?  Well I will never know the answer, but I do know he held up everyone boarding and getting into their respected seats because he remained focused on loading that large piece of matter into one specific spot, along with the bag that already occupied the space.  One also would think that, if you have an entire line waiting on you, staring at you, you would change your course of action or at the very least adjust the plan of attack.

Aunt Heather Piper in front of Le Louvre in Paris France
Me in front of Le Louvre in Paris, France. 2005

Well, I take that back, he did.  He chose to shove this massive bag in the overhead opposite to him, which was equally as full.  Really?  Did you think there was going to be a different outcome?  I guess he doesn’t know what doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results is called.

Eventually, after 15 minutes, he got the hint, felt the pressure or gained common sense.  No matter what the reasoning was, he adjusted his arrangement.  I wasn’t mad but, I must say, having a front row seat to this craziness was quite interesting.  Maybe he had his reasons, though I really don’t see the logic, even reflecting on it now.

So I guess the moral of this story, when you travel you effect everyone around so be considerate.  O also user common sense!

Published inCommon SenseEducation & LearningFamilyObservation & ImaginationPatienceTravels

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