It’s a well worn cliche, how traveling is great at expanding horizons, but I’m realizing just now how true it is.
It’s that scene from Good Will Hunting, where the professor feels at peace after realizing that even though Will has his genius and book knowledge, he has no real experience. As a graduate of one of America’s top universities, you think you’re one of the intellectual elite. Working in finance, you think you’re on top of the world. Safe within your shell, surrounded by like minded people, it’s hard to not feel like you’re on a great path in life, hard to resist feeling superior to all the other plebs.
But when you’re traveling as a backpacker, you meet people from all walks of life, each with their own story, their own hopes, their own skills. And you realize, there’s no metric you can possibly use to compare lives; people are going about their lives in a way completely alien to your pre-journey self.