Route 1A (Post #1): Why I Travel

So yes, this blog is about seeking the best travel experiences possible: the most delicious meals, the most awe-inspiring vistas, the most authentic cultural forays, the most unique places to sleep and to shop. But ultimately, this blog is about travel. It is about what travel means. It is about why we spend so much time planning, so many conversations offering advice, and yes, so much cash money.

As such, I will periodically check in with the powers that be (philosophers, artists, global nomads) to share what it is that traveling ultimately means. Although I consider myself a writer, I don’t know that I could ever verbalize the experience of travel so well and so succinctly as the following quote I read today in the book The Art of Travel by Alain de Botton—Read and ENJOY:

“If our lives are dominated by a search for happiness, then perhaps few activities reveal as much about the dynamics of this quest—in all its ardor and paradoxes—than our travels. They express, however inarticulately, an understanding of what life might be about, outside of the constraints of work and of the struggle for survival. Yet rarely are they considered to present philosophical problems—that is, issues requiring thought beyond the practical. We are inundated with advice on where to travel to, but we hear little of why and how we should go, even though the art of travel seems naturally to sustain a number of questions neither so simple nor so trivial, and whose study might in modest ways contribute to an understanding of what the Greek philosophers beautifully termed eudaimonia, or ‘human flourishing’.”

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About Kaitlin Solimine

Kaitlin Solimine was raised in New Hampshire but has considered China a second home for the past two decades. She is the author of the award-winning forthcoming novel Empire of Glass and co-founder of Hippo Reads, a media start-up connecting academic insights with real world issues. She lives in Singapore.
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2 Responses to Route 1A (Post #1): Why I Travel

  1. Hi Isabelle,
    Thank you very much for your note – I am so happy to hear that you are visiting and enjoying the blog (and feel free to spread the word!). In regards to your question re: financing, I have consistently made travel a priority in my life, through both the richest and the poorest of times. This has meant foregoing a mortgage, fancy cars, fancy clothes, Starbucks every day, etc. etc. As such, I have posted some cheap travel tips on my blog – feel free to check out the recent post and add your own comments with any additional suggestions. I hope this helps to get you off the “armchair” and on your way to the next great adventure…
    Best,
    Kate

  2. Hi Isabelle,
    Thank you for your comment – I realized I never personally responded to this but have posted a lengthy response on the blog regarding low-cost travel. In brief, I have managed to cobble together a lot of research grants over the years that have supported a lot of my travel. I also spend wisely at home in order to save for big trips and am a DINK (double-income-no-kids). Finally, I am fortunate to have many friends who live all over the world (mostly as a result of my time living in the expat community in Beijing) and therefore often have to only buy a plane ticket abroad and then have a free place to stay! It also doesn’t hurt that my uncle is a pilot for United – free flights! 😉
    So long of the short of it is that I’m blessed and also really pro-active when it comes to finagling financing for trips!
    All best,
    Kate

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