She was still capable of love, without expecting anything–changes, gratitude–in return.
And she had loved many times in her life. Whenever this had happened, love’s energy transformed the universe around her. Whenever this energy appears, it always manages to do its work–but things were different with her, she couldn’t stand to love for long.
She yearned for a vase where Love would come and leave its flowers and its fruit. Where the living water would preserve them as though they’d just been plucked, ready to be delivered to whoever had the courage–yes, “courage” was the word–to seize them. But no one like that ever showed up–or, more accurately, people would no sooner show up than they would flee in fear because she was no vase but a storm of lightning, wind, and thunder, a force of nature that could never be tamed or merely channeled to stir windmills, light up cities, sow terror.
I loved this book. It’s totally unexpected, and yet familiar. I picked up my copy–the first paperback I’ve owned in years–at Shakespeares Café in Paris. And read it here, on the beach in Goa, India. How perfect.
Drawing on the rich experience of his own life, best-selling author Paulo Coelho takes us back in time to relive the dreams of a generation that longed for peace and dared to challenge the established social order. In Hippie, he tells the story of Paulo, a young, skinny Brazilian man with a goatee and long, flowing hair, who wants to become a writer and sets off on a journey in search of a deeper meaning for his life.
Paulo’s travels take him from South America to the famous Dam Square in Amsterdam filled with young people wearing vibrant clothes and burning incense, meditating and playing music, while discussing sexual liberation, the expansion of consciousness, and the search for an inner truth.
There he meets Karla, a Dutch woman in her twenties who has been waiting to find the ideal companion to accompany her on the fabled hippie trail to Nepal. She convinces Paulo to join her on a trip aboard the Magic Bus that travels across Europe and Central Asia to Kathmandu. They embark on the journey in the company of fascinating fellow travelers, each of whom has a story to tell, and each of whom will undergo a personal transformation, changing their priorities and values along the way. As they travel together, Paulo and Karla explore their own relationship: a life-defining love story that awakens them on every level and leads to choices and decisions that will set the course for their lives thereafter.
When my younger son was a teenager, he said something to me that has stayed in my mind: We’re here for a good time, not a long time. I think none of us know how many years or days we have to wander this planet, so we should live each day as if it’s our last.
I recently liquidated my life in order to travel. I’ve lived in Mexico for many years and since I started writing professionally, I’ve met people from all over the world. It opened my mind to opportunities to see a world that I’ve only ever read about or observed in film. Nothing prepares you for the real culture of another country, nor the kindness of a countries’ people. You must experience this.
I have a mantra that’s been running through my mind for the last couple of years: We are all one. If the Universe is to survive, it’s not about climate change but about a definite shift in how we see each other and the tolerance we have for each nation and culture around the world.
The birth of the www. gave us an opportunity that no prior generation ever had. It opened the door to the possibility of friendships from all over the world. These friendships forge the way for us to understand that regardless of the color of our skin, the languages we speak, we have a common thread running through our lives: love. We all wake up in the morning, study, grow, form family, have children—or not—worry about our families, careers, putting food on the table, our health and our love. We are all one.
At the end of my life, I know that all that will matter is how much I loved.
I’m embarking on a journey-of-a-lifetime. In the next 48 hours, I will book my destinations! So many people have asked me why I’m going. Why now?
I’ve sold all my possessions, and yes, I’m taking my photos, and small family heirlooms. So my blogs/vlogging/books/photography will take a different spin over the next six months. Get ready. I promise you it’s going to be amazing and I’m taking you with me!!
We believe that traveling around the world shouldn’t be hard: it’s actually something everyone should be able to do at least once in their lives. Whether you choose to spend a few years or just a couple months traveling this beautiful planet, it’s important to see what’s out there. It’s up to you to make the dream come true and take the first step. Launch TripPlanner to piece together and price your ideal route. Not sure where to start? You can always call one of our travel consultants and get some complimentary advice!
2. Travel opens your eyes.
If you’re open and willing, travel will make you an incredibly more well-rounded human being. And that’s really the goal, isn’t it? If you don’t know where to start, check out our Around the World planning guide.
3. Traveling helps you learn who you are.
All the challenges and opportunities travel lays at your feet help you discover who you are in a way that’s only possible on the road.
4. Travel creates meaningful relationships
People you meet while on the road become some of the most valued names on your contact list. They become places on the map to visit later on. These folks give you a glimpse outside your hometown circle of friends, and force you to take in new and refreshing perspectives, and ultimately realize that everyone is the same.
5. Traveling develops skills you didn’t know you had
Sometimes it’s only far from home that you realize you you’ve got skills you’ve never used. It’s travel that brings them to the surface and makes you smile, satisfied to have reached the mountain top, or crossed a gorge or helped a villager clean up after a storm, or even to have successfully ordered a meal at a rural Chinese restaurant.
6. Travel helps you learn new languages
There’s something satisfying about being able to throw around a few words of Greek, knowing how to say thanks in Thai, pulling out that long dormant Spanish to book a room in Santiago, or simply hearing a language you didn’t know existed just a few weeks before.
7. Travel means adventure
Zip-lining over the jungle canopy in Peru, successfully navigating the maze-like streets of Venice, bartering for the best price in the traditional markets of Marrakech, taking a speedboat ride in New Zealand, or hopping in a Land Rover and heading out to watch animals grazing in Tanzania: these are adventures worth having. People are hardwired for the excitement of adventure and travel may just be the best way to tap into it.
8. Traveling gives you perspective
Meeting people from other cultures will teach you that the way you’ve been looking at the world isn’t the way everybody else does. In fact, your point-of-view might have some major blind spots. Seeing the world for yourself will improve your vision and your grip on reality.
9. Travel helps you move forward
If you’re between jobs, schools, kids, or relationships, around the world travel can be a perfect way to move from one of these life stages into your next great adventure. A big trip won’t just ease your transition into the next stage of your life, it’ll give you a chance to reflect on where you’ve been, where you’re going, and where you want to end up.
10. Travel is education
Seeing the world provides an education that’s absolutely impossible get in school. Travel teaches you economy, politics, history, geography, and sociology in an intense, hands-on way no class will. Fortunately, the school of travel is always taking applications, no entrance exam required.
11. Travel challenges you
Getting your daily latte at the same place and staring at your screen at your nine-to-five every day not nearly interesting enough? Even if you choose to work on the road (and keep staring at the screen), you’ll have to find a new place to drink your latte, and depending on your destination, finding coffee, and foamy milk or a good place to sip them could prove to be a sizeable challenge. Travel is full of moments of joy and challenges. Overcoming the challenges gives you some of the greatest joys of all.
12. Travel shakes things up
It sucks to be stuck in a rut. Everyone knows what that’s like. A big trip can be your perfect solution. Fly around the world, stopping over in all of the places you’ve always wanted to visit. Go ahead and plan your ideal route around the world (it’s easier than you think!)
13. Traveling proves that dreams do come true
You imagined it, daydreamed about it, envisioned it. Guess what? It can be done. Around the world travel is possible, you just have to decide you’re willing to take the first step and start planning your itinerary. What are you waiting for? We’ve put together some specials to inspire you to live your dream.
14. Travel gives you cool stories
Let’s face it. Even for folks who can’t tell a story, just the words “last year in Mongolia” get you instant party points. Even when events seem trivial, nostalgia and distance create an irresistible spin that makes mundane things like getting your laundry done in Zanzibar, entertaining. Just don’t be that person and overdo it!
15. Travel is literally food for thought.
You’ll be constantly surprised at the flavors the world has to offer. The way people in other cultures and countries prepare food, and break bread together (not that all cultures even eat bread) will astound you.
16. Travel gives you a sense of accomplishment
If you’re the kind of person that dreams big, you’re probably one to reach for new challenges. Finishing a trip gives you the satisfaction that you were able make a goal to travel and accomplish what you set out to do–see the world.
17. Traveling for the hell of it
Why travel? Because you can. Because you want to. Because it beats the alternative (staying home). Why not pick up your tickets and get the ball rolling!