One of the reasons I elected to take my new job when it was offered to me was because it offered something that I’ve always claimed to like: ‘travel’. Everyone says they like travel; on personal statements, on blogs, on dating profiles; in interviews. Its like a go- to acceptable response, whether it’s true or not. People use it all the time, I interviewed a young girl a few days ago who cited ‘travel’ as an interest, when I probed further I realised what she meant is that she likes holidays. Preferable with her family. To places she’s familiar with. Does that count? I’m not sure. What makes travel different to a holiday? Is it about duration? People always talk about how long they go travelling for in months don’t they? So a week in Benidorm is a holiday not travelling? Well what about my grandparents who spend half the year there? Have they gone travelling to Benidorm for six months? I don’t think so. Is it about location? About motivation? About cost? Exertion? About distance covered? About people met and activities done?
I think there are a lot of cross overs, and arguments either way. A quick Google suggests that perhaps traveling means going to various locations, and having to take time off work in order to do so, whereas a holiday is staying in one place and getting time off to do so. What about the trip that me and the fella are taking in September then? We’ve taken the time off work but we’re going interrailing and will be going to seven or eight cities and passing through about six different countries. Are we travelling or on holiday?
Anyway, I’m confusing myself and it doesn’t really matter, both suggest visiting places unknown and entertaining the idea of least of getting to grips with a different culture. Either way, be it holiday or travel I like it. And so, when I saw a job advertised in the charity sector that offered the possibility of international travel I put on my interview suit and jazzed up my CV. This baby was mine. And yes, while it hasn’t been all that I hoped for (when is anything) next week, I am going to Taiwan, and that is really cool.
Really cool! I mean come on- Taiwan?!!?!?
I’ve never been to Asia, I’ve never even thought about it, and now here I am, seven days away from a sixteen hour flight there! It is a work trip, but that in a way is even better, because unlike just going by myself and staying in hostels with other tourists I’ll be working with Taiwanese people who will be able to show me the country the way it should be seen. I’ll get the real insider track, which is what many people cite as the difference between holidays and travel. I’ve got five days working, and then about three full days to explore. I’m at the mercy of Trip Advisor and recommendation so watch this space as I delve into the unknown.