Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Travel and the Everyday…

Sometimes it is easy to forget that one of the best experiences when travel is not to go to tourist sites, but just to partake and observe in the day-to-day activities with the people who live there.

But, it’s critical to do it with purpose.

When you fly to Asia for 2.5 days and have 2 presentations, you don’t necessarily have a lot of time for “sightseeing,” but you do have a lot of time for heightened awareness of the little things.

For example, how

  • the seats in taxicabs are covered with white linen
  • the driver can automatically open and close the doors
  • you get pushed, shoved, jostled, and crammed into subway cars
  • everyone lines up for subways and buses
  • you can get cans of coffee from vending machines…that are HOT
  • the cleaning staff of the bullet train all come out, line up in front of the train and then bow to the boarding customers
  • the conductor on the train bows when he enters and leaves your car
  • annoying it is that your credit card doesn’t work everywhere (ok, that’s not a good thing)
  • darn fast the bullet train is (stay tuned for video)
  • smart it is to show a map of the subway system with arrival times for EACH station in every car
  • did I mention the HOT cans of coffee?

I believe (hope) that by raising my awareness while I’m here, I can raise my own awareness of these things while at home…which I hope will lead to an overall sense of greater mindfulness.

At the very least, it will make me yearn for hot cans of coffee dispensed from vending machines.

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