Travel, then, is a voyage into that famously subjective zone, the imagination, and what the traveler brings back is — and has to be — an ineffable compound of himself and the place, what’s really there and what’s only in him. We live without a past or future, for a moment at least, and are ourselves up for grabs and open to interpretation. But there is, for the traveler at least, the sense that learning about home and learning about a foreign world can be one and the same thing. And in truth, many of us, even (or especially) the ones who are fleeing America abroad, will get taken, willy-nilly, as symbols of the American Dream. Besides, even those who don’t move around the world find the world moving more and more around them. More often than not, monkey see monkey do, we learn our behaviors from the example of others. Who is to say that my way of doing something is the only correct or right way? My dream is to be a global citizen and I cannot be closed off to the ways of other cultures. I am a visual person, and in order to understand the hardships of an individual I like to see them with my own eyes. Language facilitates this cracking open, for when we go to France, we often migrate to French, and the more childlike self, simple and polite, that speaking a foreign language educes. And that is why many of us travel not in search of answers, but of better questions. I tend to believe more abroad than I do at home (which, though treacherous again, can at least help me to extend my vision), and I tend to be more easily excited abroad, and even kinder. Abroad, we are wonderfully free of caste and job and standing; we are, as Hazlitt puts it, just the “gentlemen in the parlour,” and people cannot put a name or tag to us. App Development We travel to bring what little we can, in our ignorance and knowledge, to those parts of the globe whose riches are differently dispersed. I started out as a tourist most certainly, but feel confident that I am quickly transiting into a traveler the more I adventure out of the country each summer. The other factor complicating and exciting all of this is people, who are, more and more, themselves as many-tongued and mongrel as cities like Sydney or Toronto or Hong Kong. Here, in these 15 quotes, Pico Iyer reveals just how transformative travel can be and how it really is a voyage full of magic. “So travel, for many of us, is a quest for not just the unknown, but the unknowing; I, at least, travel in search of an innocent eye that can return me to a more innocent self. For seeing without feeling can obviously be uncaring; while feeling without seeing can be blind. The article “Why We Travel” by Pico Iyer talks about his opinion on why people travel to foreign places and what they expect to gain from their trips. Change ), You are commenting using your Google account. He became a travel writer to communicate the magic of foreign places to readers. Travel much like love at times can be impulsive when we truly travel Pico Iyer explains that when truly traveling we can fall in love with the idea of a place and the fact we have freedom; and in many times no boundaries. Pico Iyer expounds on his various experiences with traveling across the world and its transformative power on your worldview in “Why We Travel”. “The ideal travel book,” Christopher Isherwood once said, “should be perhaps a little like a crime story in which you’re in search of something.” And it’s the best kind of something, I would add, if it’s one that you can never quite find. For if every true love affair can feel like a journey to a foreign country, where you can’t quite speak the language, and you don’t know where you’re going, and you’re pulled ever deeper into the inviting darkness, every trip to a foreign country can be a love affair, where you’re left puzzling over who you are and whom you’ve fallen in love with. Anyone witnessing this strange scene would have drawn the right conclusion: I was in love. Even when I’m not speaking pidgin English in Hanoi, I’m simplified in a positive way, and concerned not with expressing myself, but simply making sense. And the way in which each culture takes in this common pool of references tells you as much about them as their indigenous products might. In order to be a global citizen I need to learn and adopt certain practices or mantras of other cultures. ”, “I’m simplified in a positive way, and concerned not with expressing myself, but simply making sense.”. I admire him for his wisdom and romantic view of travel and its revelations. Not the least of the challenges of travel, therefore, is learning how to import—and export—dreams with tenderness.”, “…the real voyage of discovery consists not in seeing new places but in seeing with new eyes. In addition, travelling uncovers the other cultures with a way that hearing or reading about cannot cover. When you go to a McDonald’s outlet in Kyoto, you will find Teriyaki McBurgers and Bacon Potato Pies. Pico Iyer is the author of two novels and thirteen works of nonfiction on subjects ranging from the Cuban Revolution to Islamic mysticism, from Graham Greene to Canadian visions of diversity, from forgotten nations to the 21st-century global order. Home; About. There are many challenges in this, of course, in what it says about essential notions of family and community and loyalty, and in the worry that air-conditioned, purely synthetic versions of places may replace the real thing — not to mention the fact that the world seems increasingly in flux, a moving target quicker than our notions of it. “To write well about a thing,” he said, “I’ve got to like it!”. In this way, travel can be a kind of monasticism on the move: On the road, we often live more simply (even when staying in a luxury hotel), with no more possessions than we can carry, and surrendering ourselves to chance. That, in fact, is perhaps the most central and most wrenching of the questions travel proposes to us: how to respond to the dream that people tender to you? What we find outside ourselves has to be inside ourselves for us to find it. In Mary Morris’s “House Arrest,” a thinly disguised account of Castro’s Cuba, the novelist reiterates, on the copyright page, “All dialogue is invented. I remember, in fact, after my first trips to Southeast Asia, more than a decade ago, how I would come back to my apartment in New York, and lie in my bed, kept up by something more than jet lag, playing back, in my memory, over and over, all that I had experienced, and paging wistfully though my photographs and reading and re-reading my diaries, as if to extract some mystery from them. Pico Iyer was 28 years old when he began the trip that would be explored in “Video Night in Kathmandu,” a landmark book that instantly established him as one of the world’s leading travel writers (the book was No. Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. I hear their stories, I see their stories. We travel, initially, to lose ourselves; and we travel, next, to find ourselves. It just feels as if it doesn’t. Pico Iyer is an avid traveler. I am, in many ways, an increasingly typical specimen, if only because I was born, as the son of Indian parents, in England, moved to America at 7 and cannot really call myself an Indian, an American or an Englishman. We represent them wherever we go, whenever we speak of them. We travel to open our hearts and eyes and learn more about the world than our newspapers will accommodate. We must in turn do our country justice and be responsible representatives for the hope and kindness that our country can offer. Siddharth Pico Raghavan Iyer (born 11 February 1957), known as Pico Iyer, is a British-born essayist and novelist, often known for his travel writing. (Disclaimer: If you’re not entitled to travel anywhere this summer, reading the article can cause severe jealousy and a strong desire to jump on the next train to go far, far away.) And we travel, in essence, to become young fools again — to slow time down and get taken in, and fall in love once more. We travel to bring what little we … The article “Why We Travel” by Pico Iyer is an upbeat article that could possibly interest and relate to a number of readers. Travel is the best way we have of rescuing the humanity of places, and saving them from abstraction and ideology.”, “And in the process, we also get saved from abstraction ourselves, and come to see how much we can bring to the places we visit, and how much we can become a kind of carrier pigeon—an anti-Federal Express, if you like—in transporting back and forth what every culture needs.”. Change ), You are commenting using your Facebook account. […] “There is wisdom in turning as often as possible from the familiar to the unfamiliar; it keeps the mind nimble; it kills prejudice, and it fosters humor.”, “And if travel is like love, it is, in the end, mostly because it’s a heightened state of awareness, in which we are mindful, receptive, undimmed by familiarity and ready to be transformed. And technology, too, compounds this (sometimes deceptive) sense of availability, so that many people feel they can travel around the world without leaving the room — through cyberspace or CD-ROMs, videos and virtual travel. Travel helps people see the truth of different countries around the world and Iyer compares travel to love as it opens us up to transform ourselves to be more aware of our surroundings. And even as the world seems to grow more exhausted, our travels do not, and some of the finest travel books in recent years have been those that undertake a parallel journey, matching the physical steps of a pilgrimage with the metaphysical steps of a questioning (as in Peter Matthiessen’s great “The Snow Leopard”), or chronicling a trip to the farthest reaches of human strangeness (as in Oliver Sack’s “Island of the Color-Blind,” which features a journey not just to a remote atoll in the Pacific, but to a realm where people actually see light differently). Paul Theroux in Why We Travel explains why humans travel to various places, ranging from developing countries to dangerous locations. ( Log Out / Why We Travel By Paul Theroux: Prejudices and Traveling. by Pico Iyer An unexpected truth from a celebrated travel writer: Stillness just might be the ultimate adventure. We live without a past or future, for a moment at least, and are ourselves up for grabs and open to interpretation. These days a whole new realm of exotica arises out of the way one culture colors and appropriates the products of another. Worldhum.com recently republished one of my favorite essays – Why We Travel by Pico Iyer – as part of their 8th anniversary celebration. We travel to open our hearts and eyes and learn more about the world than our newspapers will accommodate. Madonna in an Islamic country, after all, sounds radically different from Madonna in a Confucian one, and neither begins to mean the same as Madonna on East 14th Street. Eventually, I had to stop giving my imput and reasons for loving these quotations because I was getting repetitive. So where Morris, in effect, was chronicling the last days of the Empire, a younger travel writer is in a better position to chart the first days of a new Empire, post-national, global, mobile and yet as diligent as the Raj in transporting its props and its values around the world. → Even more importantly, we are a representative of our own country and are often faced with criticism or harsh feelings because of our identity and home country. I remember once asking the great travel writer Norman Lewis if he’d ever be interested in writing on apartheid South Africa. The issue then when deconstructing an article like this is whether to view and critique it upon its effectiveness for the intended reader or in a more holistic view. +8 (123) 985 789 Free SEO Analysis. It is our right to speak highly and truthfully of them. All the great travel books are love stories, by some reckoning — from the Odyssey and the Aeneid to the Divine Comedy and the New Testament — and all good trips are, like love, about being carried out of yourself and deposited in the midst of terror and wonder. Part 1: “Why We Travel” Summary: In “Why We Travel”, Pico Iyer explains how traveling to new areas will open up new perspectives and help fix the abstract belief we have on the world. I tend to believe more abroad than I do at home […], and I tend to be more easily excited abroad, and even kinder. But more significantly, we carry values and beliefs and news to the places we go, and in many parts of the world, we become walking video screens and living newspapers, the only channels that can take people out of the censored limits of their homelands. Justice and be responsible representatives for the people we encounter, telling stories... An emotional experience, and are ourselves up for grabs and open to interpretation right:! 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