This is our monthly project on #Family #Travelers which are created from interviews and engagements that Travlyng authors have with active travelers. If you are interested to be interviewed for your travels, please reach out to us on Twitter.
There is one trait that brings all globetrotters on a single plain, and that is intrepidity. Many travelers explore this attribute single handedly and deliberately move out of their comfort zones as individuals. However, there are several others who try to make sure that the experience is wholesome and depart in units. By ‘unit’ I mean the institution that lays our foundation from the moment we begin to exist, that is, Family.
Our interaction with solo travelers continues. But, we have decided to gradually explore the various niches of exploration, which brings us to our first phase of branching out toward those who travel with their kin. We had already set the preparatory ground on our first episode, The Beginning, and our second episode, The Graduation, is aimed at providing a single stage to many nuances of discovering things unknown as a family.
Breaking personal stereotypes: There’s a common belief about westerners being individualistic and easterners being family-centric. But, do we try to look beyond these maxims and ask can’t both be both the identities at the same time? Perhaps we do not, and that is why stereotypes exist.
Rita finds enjoyment in taking her mother to different places and showing her things like a parent will do to a kid. She is ethnically a Chinese woman born in Hong Kong who
grew up trilingual and went to an English immersion school. (She) then immigrated to Canada in (her) youth and (has) been working with languages for as long as (she) can remember.
It is Rita’s “Chinese/ Eastern” heritage that saves her from western eyes, dismissing the act of taking her Mom along as ‘strange behavior’ because according to them kids grow up and grow out of their parents. Fair enough, it’s an instance of cultural difference, and acceptance is directly related to the assertion of the contradiction.
But here’s the thing: The more we want situations to be plain and clear, the more complicated they become. The intensity of filial intimacy can never solely depend on cultural specificities. It is a relative subject.
We’ve been climbing ruins and scuba diving in the cenotes in Mexico, I’ve spent some time in London, and we just returned from Cuba a few months ago. We are actually planning a return trip to Cuba towards the beginning of next year to scuba dive there as well.
says Amber. Devin has only a couple of years till he becomes an adult and fulfills his dream of becoming a divemaster. He is traveling with his mother since childhood and a lust for exploration has been inculcated in him.
Amber calls him the “amazing 16 years old son” who is too responsible for his age. Isn’t it reminiscent of the kind of responsibility Rita too feels for her mother, who not only takes her along on vacations, but also religiously plans everything from scratch to hatch?
Fiona Whiley, a traveler from Australia, as we have already mentioned in our last episode considers family travel a good way to unite with so many members sharing the same blood line. She goes on many such tours. After all it’s nowhere written that reunions only have to happen over turkey and wine. And, just because the social media presence of parents traveling with their kids is more in number, it is not to be believed that ‘the other way round’ never happens. Coming back to Amber and Devin, they have made a few changes here and there in their lives to accommodate more traveling. Does this ‘unlikely’ behavior of a white boy at his sweet sixteenth leave you surprised with knitted eyebrows? Most probably, in a few years the roles would be reversed and it will be Devin who will make arrangements to take his mother on tours. The personal/innate traits which a community collectively and commonly exudes develop to become cultural stereotypes. here would obviously be instances of similar number of dissonances within that community. Therefore, we need to hear the hearts of humans and not the dry empiricism of communities that divide us.
Traveling is all about transpiring the union of the communities that crisscross the one and only ubiquitous community, that of the human community.
Important Tips that our interviewees have shared with us:
Ensuring lack of Disagreements: Fiona Whiley -
When we plan a holiday together, everyone contributes ideas to the itinerary…Everyone is invited to the activity, but equally free to break away on their own if they want.
Traveling with Elderly Parents: Rita takes her 66 years old mother to those destinations which could be explored on a packaged tour, so that she does not feel overwhelmed and instead concentrate only on the enjoyment of traveling.
Financial Tips: Amber –
You should always carry a little cash on you. At least, enough for emergencies. Some places do not accept card (like Cuba, if you’re American) but overall in most countries it’s advisable to use credit cards. If you shop around for credit cards you’ll find that some of them offer smaller, no, or refunded charges on international transactions .Those charges add up and can save you a nice chunk of change.
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