Travel, better than sex, that’s bound to have my friends who may read this, thinking I have totally lost it . As for my partner, well probably best I steer her away from reading this little piece. She may take it as a personal critique on her, and I kind of prefer eating my dinner and not the dog enjoying it!
I assume you are all aware of what it is you enjoy about sex, so I will concentrate on what makes travel so addictive and exciting. Why do we travel? Several years ago there was a bogus advertisement which ‘spoofed’ the Army Careers Office version, it went a little like this;
“Be Frank, join the Army, visit exciting, unusual and far-flung places, see strange and exotic people and be less than pleasant to them!” (You get the idea).
Hopefully of course unless you are auditioning for the part of an ‘unsub’ on the next series of ‘Criminal Minds’ this does not describe anybody’s personal reasons for travelling!
It seems this needs great consideration. There are of course the obvious reasons, time away from the daily grind of work, relaxation, sightseeing and sun as well as the opportunity to spend some quality time with the family, connecting with the rapidly growing children.
In truth though, most of this maybe achieved much closer to home. There is not any need to travel far, take a week or two off work, put the feet up around the house and take a few day trips to the seaside or local beauty spots almost on your own doorstep. Alternatively a holiday maybe taken in one of the many worthwhile places to visit in your own, state or country, take the car and be there within a few hours taking all manner of ‘luxuries’. It is usually convenient, stress free and provides all the comfort and relaxation that could ever need.
Unlimited travel reasons
What reasons do we have for choosing to travel, what makes it worthwhile? It can often be stressful, booking the holiday, deciding on where to go and which hotel to stay in. Hard-earned cash risked in the ‘popular’ resorts of Europe, or the more exotic locations further afield. Adventurous travellers often spend more than two days of this valuable holiday time, travelling to and from the chosen destination in the cramped cabin of a jumbo jet, the miracle of the aviation industry. Even when travelling to these long-haul destinations children are often taken, even young ones that cannot comprehend why they cannot move around and why they are wasting so much time confined to a flying prison. To their parent’s embarrassment and irritation of fellow passengers this frustration is often known vented by boisterous children.
Some parents undoubtedly feel they are adding to their children’s education, expanding their horizons. Travel from a young age provides them with greater insight and understanding of the world where they live, enabling them to grow into more ‘rounded’ and world-wise individuals. This may for them be good enough reason in itself for them to make these long trips with their families half way around the world. In some cases they maybe even compensating for their own lack of opportunities to travel as a child, giving their own offspring something their parents had been unable to do for them.
There are of course more practical reasons for travelling, work is an obvious reason, but additionally many people now have close relatives and friends that have emigrated abroad. Visiting them give many of us ample reason to make long journeys either by ourselves or with families.
Logistic difficulties aside
These journeys can in themselves prove a logistical nightmare, anybody in any doubt about that should ask any couple that have taken their two or three young children from their suburban semi-detached on a twenty hour plus flight to some distant land! First there is the packing, ensuring everybody has enough suitable clothing, toiletries, the correct factor sun lotion, sufficient nappies/diapers and batteries for the countless but essential gadgets needed for comfort and keeping the children entertained. Transportation to the airport, and check-in once they eventually arrive there, and this is all before they even board the plane! Travel with kids is an art.
Is this sounding better than sex then? Stick with it, unless of course you have a secret liaison planned! Do not worry this should still be here when you return.
Fortunately there are many reputable companies offering package holidays that take much of this stress away from the travellers. They will make all the arrangements, they cannot pack for you, more is the pity, but they can take care of most of the rest, leaving the traveller to enjoy the journey and holiday with the minimum of fuss. The travel industry is a very competitive market today, the chances of a bad holiday experience due to poor hotels or service are vastly reduced, and poor operators would not last long in the current financial climate.
What other reasons are there for travelling? It maybe to visit a place of historical or cultural importance, or a place of great natural beauty. To see the A-list of world sites; the Great Pyramid at Giza, the Eiffel Tower, Taj Mahal, Machu Picchu, the Great Barrier Reef, the Amazon rainforest, Niagara Falls, the list is only limited by the knowledge and ambition of the person.
Our holidays maybe as active or as relaxing as we want, relaxation is for many of course just what the break is all about, spending time catching the sun by the pool, eating out in the evening and taking the occasional excursion so they can say they ‘saw’ the sights. The epitome of this is the all-inclusive holiday, where many ‘travellers’ rarely if ever even leave the resort. Conversely there is a rapidly growing number of travellers that want to do much more with their holiday time. Trekking in Nepal, wildlife watching in the Antarctic, Costa Rica, on safari in Kenya, backpacking across Europe, the Americas, and Australasia or even round the World. Additionally there are those that a two-week annual holiday is not enough, taking extended trips of six months or even longer, often giving up work to do so. These ‘gap’ year travellers intend to experience as much as they can in one single trip, usually taking in several continents, many countries, dozens of cities and several ‘must see’ sights. For them ‘immersing’ themselves into the culture is often cited as necessary to the journey, which they often view as an almost spiritual experience; modern-day pilgrims.
The truth is the reasons for travelling are purely personal, there are almost as many reasons for wanting to travel as there are destinations to go to. How many of us have wanted to visit a destination because we saw it on television, or read about it in a magazine, maybe even as a child and have dreamed of the chance to visit one day?
The planet is also under threat, everybody is aware that some of the more fragile environments are diminishing and that the opportunities to see some of these rapidly disappearing habitats are disappearing almost as quickly. This means that travellers often feel that they have a list of destinations to visit which they perceive as somewhat time limited.
Nature puts on the best shows
Taking the opportunity to witness one of Mother Nature’s spectacular shows gives many of us a reason to start packing our battered and well-travelled suitcase, Mount Etna on Sicily, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, United States, and whole patches of Iceland. There are also many more which are a little more subtle but no less impressive, Autumnal colour in New England, United States, migrating wildebeest in the Masai-Mara, or the flooding of the Okavango Delta in Botswana.
Everybody enjoys a party, arriving in town in time for the greatest festivals on earth, participating in the best party around sounds like a reason many might choose to travel. Carnival in Rio de Janeiro, Mardi Gras in New Orléans, or the running of the bulls, Pamplona, Spain. Celebrating New Year is a huge attraction in many of the major cities of the World, including the Chinese New Year. There are also religious festivals which of course generate great interest for many, all the major religions have their own periods of celebration, obvious places to visit to fully experience these include Rome and St Peters Square in particular, Calcutta for festivals on the Ganges and Lourdes, France.
These are all excellent reasons to choose to travel, to spend time looking through guidebooks and travel magazines constantly researching the next big trip. Saving hard to enable travel to the most exotic and far-flung destinations. It sometimes seems that the more unusual the destination, the more it may enhance a reputation as savvy world travellers the more prepared they maybe to accept a few inconveniences to make the journey.
So back to the title question, sex or travel, made your mind up yet? Let me give you some pros and cons to help you make up your mind; it is usually less messy, but possibly more stressful, expenses; jury is out as some have some high maintenance partners! Holidays usually last longer, if they don’t you are in the wrong job, trust me. Solo travelling is more enjoyable than solo sex. You can show your parents the photographs from your travels, well most of them. You can enjoy sex whilst you travel, you can also travel whilst enjoying sex but be careful of the cabin crew!
Which do I prefer? Not going there! Travelling is in my blood however, I have a wanderlust and it is definitely the best thing I can do with my clothes on ………….. well I do have them on most of the time!
Okay so now it is your turn, what are your reasons for travelling and which gives you the most pleasure? I look forward to reading your comments with great interest.