The saddest part about travelling is always at the end, knowing that you are leaving and not knowing when or if you're going to return. Osaka has been a magical experience, something that I have always wanted to do since young. Stepping into Japan and seeing an entirely new culture from my own eyes, not just from a screen, is truly a humbling experience.
I was amazed by how friendly and polite the Japanese people were. Turns out that the stereotype is indeed true. Despite us not knowing a single word of Japanese, the locals were kind to us. We figured out ways to communicate despite our language barriers. And at the end of each conversation, there was always a ‘thank you’ followed by a smile. I saw first-hand how it is possible for an entire population to be kind, gentle and polite.
It's no wonder why St Augustine said that “The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page,” or Mark Twain who claimed that “Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness.”
The entire experience got me thinking. How great it would be if we could travel all the time? That we could do so without the barriers of money? That travel be made compulsory for everyone? Why can't we have a world where travelling is possible for anyone who wants to?
Because right now, travelling is still restricted to those who either have loads of money or those who are overly adventurous. To travel constantly, you must be rich or you must be willing to throw down everything that you have and take a leap of faith. For people who are caught in between, you can only travel once a while when you save enough money.
It's a never ending cycle. You slog hard in your normal life just to earn enough for the occasional trip. For some, it's like we're solely working just to get the little reward at the end. Vacation abroad is our ‘reward’. It's a little sad, don't you think?
I wonder if there is such a way where everyone in society can go wherever they like, whenever they want to? Surely the world will be a happier place if that's the case, no? But of course, all these are just overly idealistic thoughts.
Stay tuned for my post-Osaka post!