Weekly Travel Quotes

On taking the next journey…

travel quote

Photo taken in Collingwood Bay, South Island, New Zealand

Travel Quote of the Week: “All journeys have secret destinations of which the traveller is unaware.”       – Martin Buber

After a few months of rest and recuperation at home from my last humanitarian work in South Sudan, I am finally leaving for my next assignment in another country.  When I was offered the new job, I immediately accepted without researching about my new host country.  I have heard about it in the news as the world’s longest running civil war.  But other than that, I am unaware of its other aspects (such as cultural, geographical, historical, economical among others).   Although I have read the crucial bit of the country’s profile particularly on the security aspect (I know I can just google the information or read from my briefing orientation notes), but I prefer to learn more while in country rather than depending on available literature prior my journey.  I am excited to find out its uniqueness to my previous other host countries and to explore its road less travelled destinations.  It will be another challenging experience for sure, but I know that at the end of it all, I will come back home with new learnings and a much wider perception on how to live life to the fullest.

To all my followers, I apologize once again if I will not be as active as I promised I would be  in blogging this year.  Nevertheless, I will still continue to find time to post once in awhile if my situation permits to do so.


Categories: New Zealand, Wandering the Road Less Traveled: My Humanitarian Missions, Weekly Travel Quotes | 2 Comments

On reminiscing one’s journey…….

DSC07730 by susanmaedetera
A photo by susanmaedetera on Flickr.

Travel Quote of the Week:  “Like all great travelers, I have seen more than I remember, and remember more than I have seen.” – Benjamin Disraeli

Whenever we see on television, movies or magazines the images of places we have visited in the past, all the memories come back again.   For instance, just this morning I was watching the Globe Trekker at Travel and Leisure Channel when they featured Venice in one of the segments about Italy.  As the host toured the viewers around the city, I remember not just how i have seen it but also how i felt at that time, what I did in that particular place,  what special food i ate during my stay and how i explored the city.  A rush of memories came flooding back.  Suddenly, as I continue to watch, I remember vividly almost everything that happened to me during my Venice holiday trip in the summer of 2012.

Sometimes, it is not just the things that we see in a place that makes our stay more memorable.  It is also the experiences such as embarrassing or funny moments that happened during our travels.  Sometimes having bloopers and making a fool of ourselves can make our trip more extraordinary.  In Marrakesh, I treated myself to an expensive lunch at a high end cafe.  I always carry with me extra money in my secret pocket that is why I was confident to order pricey dishes from the menu.  After all, I only do this once in every trip.  When I was about to pay, I forgot that I finished all my money in my wallet from shopping.  I also forgot that I did not bring my extra money and left my card at the hotel so that I will not exceed my shopping budget.  (I am an impulsive buyer, so I am mindful of my expenses every time I plan to buy souvenirs especially at crafts market).  I was so humiliated when I asked the waiter if I could go to my hotel to get some money and come back later.  Surprisingly, he said just go.  I was not sure whether he understood me because he was speaking in French (and my French is so bad!).  I offered to leave my belongings behind to ensure him that I am coming back.  He gestured to me to leave.   I left running towards the hotel to get money.  Midway down my hotel street, it rained hard.  Everyone ran for shelter except me.  I was so scared that the waiter might not have understood me and will call the police.  So I ran…and ran….and ran…in the rain.  I will forever remember Place Jemaa El Fna in Marrakesh with that image of me running towards the hotel while carrying shopping bags like some crazy woman being pursued by police officers! LOL!

Aside from experience, your feelings or emotional state during your travels is what makes you remember the place you have visited.  It was in Sydney when my ex boyfriend broke up with me.  We were both there for a holiday.  Prior to the trip, we were already having problems.  I thought that the trip might save our relationship.  The fighting intensified.  It was the worst holiday ever.  Every time I see the Opera House or the Taronga Zoo, i am reminded by not the beauty of the place but how I cried and cried while walking around…i was lost in my own emotional state that I do not remember much of the things that Ive seen in the city.

People we met along the way (unexpectedly!) also make our trip more memorable.  While on the way to Brussels from Amsterdam, I met different interesting people on the train.  There was a major train accident and I had to find my way back to Brussels as I cannot afford to miss my train to Paris the next day.  Luckily, I met few Samaritans along the way.  One Dutch young woman, helped me to find a different route.  While on the train,  she asked me about my travels.  When she learned that I am from a developing country, she asked me bluntly, how I could afford to travel in Europe when I am from a very poor country where all people are so poor.  I told her that just like in her country, there are some people who cannot afford to travel despite being in a rich country! (Of course I explained later on how I worked and saved hard for my Europe Dream Tour!)  🙂 On another train, I met another Dutch lady named Anika.  She was in her mid 40’s.  We chatted endlessly.  She shared so much about her life, her family, her love life (she got divorced twice!) her struggles as a victim of domestic abuse and how she is finding her own self again after being separated from her ex-husband.  So when I do get the chance to go back again to Amsterdam, I will be reminded of the people I met on the train.

There are other factors that make us remember a place we visited in the past such as the local food, local music, different culture etc.  But for me, I want my travels to be more meaningful aside from being unforgettable because this is what will make me remember more than what I have seen.    As the saying goes, “The traveler sees what he sees, the tourist sees what he has come to see.”

How about you?  How do you remember your travels?


Photo taken at Christchurch Botanical Garden in New Zealand with my friend, RC.

Categories: Weekly Travel Quotes | 6 Comments

On Letting Go……..

A watercolor painting I made of the sunset in Maun, Botswana.  © Susan Detera Paintings

A watercolor painting I made of the sunset in Maun, Botswana. © Susan Detera Paintings

Travel Quote of the Week:  People come into your life for a reason, a season, or a lifetime.  When you figure out which it is, you know exactly what to do.  (Author unknown)

This quote was an excerpt from the poem ‘The Reason, A Season, and A Lifetime’ a personal favorite of mine.

When someone walks away and leaves us behind (either a friend, an acquaintance or a loved one) we always end up asking the question Why especially if there is no fight, no argument, no other reason we can think of as to why they left without saying goodbye.  Moving on is often not easy as we are always left with the thought of the ‘WHYs’ and the ‘IFs’ eventually leading to self blame and or self destruction.

When I came across this poem, somehow, it helped me understand the ‘WHYs’….it somehow made me stop thinking of the ‘IFs’.

This poem helps us understand why people, friends and loved ones included, come and go and that why you have to let go and move on.

But what if, this time, you are the one who has to leave someone behind?   Do you still wonder why?

Today, I am sharing something very personal.  It is still very fresh so bear with me for I am going through a different ‘gasm’ journey, another diversion to the long winding road ahead of me.

Continue reading

Categories: Watercolor Painting, Weekly Travel Quotes | Tags: | 13 Comments

On Understanding the Purpose of Life


As I depart tomorrow for a humanitarian mission in a high risk country, I am leaving you this quote from Eleanor Roosevelt.  Her words have inspired and motivated me to take on yet another journey to an unknown dangerous place

…a new beginning…another life changing journey.

Photo taken with People Living with HIV and AIDS in Southern Kalahari District, Botswana.

Categories: Africa, Botswana, Weekly Travel Quotes | Tags: , | 5 Comments

On travelling alone…

Eze France

Travel Quote of the Week: It is better to travel alone than with a bad companion. – African Proverb

Photo I took at a Cathedral on top of  Èze, a medieval village perched like an eagles nest on a rocky spur overlooking the Mediterranean sea located at the Alpes-Maritimes in southeastern France.
Although i often travel on my own, I still want to find a travel buddy as having a companion leads to a more meaningful experience. As the saying goes, “Life is better shared than experiencing the best moments of your life alone.”
However, in my experience, it is very difficult to find a travel companion who shares the same interests, have the same idea of ‘having fun’, have a sense of humour and a flexible coping mechanism.
Sometimes travelling with a close friend, a partner and or a family member, you expect that it will all be ‘perfect fun’.  Depending on the compatibility and the level of flexibility and sensitivity between travellers, a perfect trip may end up a disastrous trip.
Travelling is supposed to be enjoying the moment not bringing additional baggage from the past and or discussing issues or opening an old wound that may trigger a conflict or animosity between travel companions.  It should bring travel companions much closer together.
But when drama and negative emotions are mixed into a supposedly fun trip, than it becomes complicated.  Therefore, I would rather end up travelling alone than being with a bad companion.  Still, I am not losing hope in eventually finding a perfect travel buddy in the future.
How about you? Have you had experience travelling with a bad companion?

Categories: Eze, France, Weekly Travel Quotes | Tags: , | 10 Comments

On Love and Romance on the Road…


Travel Quote of the Week:  Traveling tend to magnify all human emotions. – Peter Hoeg

Photo I took on the way to Passo del Bernina, Switzerland.
Have you traveled with your partner before? Or have you found romance on the road?
Tell us what you think of this week’s travel quote and share us your experience!
Categories: Weekly Travel Quotes | Tags: | 3 Comments

On Exploring…..


Travel Quote of the Week:  I find the great thing in this world is not so much where we stand, as in what direction we are moving: To reach the port of heaven, we must sail sometimes with the wind and sometimes against it – but we must sail, and not drift, nor lie at anchor.   – Oliver Wendel Holmes

Photo I took at the Barcelona Harbour in Spain.

Some people are just contended to be in their own comfort zone.  Others can’t stand being in one place for a long time.  I chose the latter. I believe that the world offers more than what I am getting within my own comfort zone.  Traveling makes me see things beyond what I see in my own surroundings. It makes my world more exciting. It widen my knowledge on many things including learning more about myself.  It widens my horizons as I explore my freedom to live the way I want my life to be.

No matter where the wind will take me, for as long as I am moving, I will always be making the best of what life ought to be….and this is why I continue to leave my home and wander about to places I’ve never seen before!

What about you?

Categories: Barcelona, Europe, Spain, Weekly Travel Quotes | Tags: , | 4 Comments

On Travelling…..

travel quote

Travel Quote of the Week:  “I get to travel with me. I need somebody to bring me back to who I am. It’s hard to be alone.” – Leonardo DiCaprio.

A photo i took on Christmas Day at a countryside ranch in Surrey, UK.

I seldom travel with friends.  Why? I like the flexibility of having my own time exploring new places and doing things I like. I can change plans at the last minute without consideration of what others feel or think about what I want to do.   Also, when I travel alone, my journey turns into a self-discovery one where I get to know more about myself and learn to deal with challenges on my own. In short,  I only have myself to deal with…. NO drama, NO conflicts and NO complications!

However, travelling alone has its own disadvantages too.  It can get lonely and boring.  Some activities are more fun to do with close friends than doing it alone.  These include exploring the local nightlife, drinking in pubs, doing extreme adventure and outdoor activities and food tripping.  Moreover, you get to have loads of good pictures of yourself (you have your friends to take your photo!).

On the other hand, you can always meet and mingle with new friends if you prefer to travel alone.

So whether you travel alone or with friends, make sure to enjoy every moment of your holiday trip because at the end of the day, what matters most is how to make the most of your travels to create beautiful and unforgettable memories to bring back home.

How about you? What do you prefer — to travel alone or with friends?

Categories: London, United Kingdom, Weekly Travel Quotes | Tags: , , | 13 Comments

On Getting Lost….

tourist in barcelona

Travel Quote of the Week:  “Put down that map and get wonderfully lost!”

 A photo i took of a tourist seemingly lost on top of Mount Montjuic in Barcelona….


My reflections:

I often find myself getting lost in big cities every time i travel. Why? Because i am not good with directions. Why? Because i do not use a map. Why? Because i do not know how to use one!

But why would i want to get lost in big cities? Because i enjoy wandering around…i like the adventures and mishaps that goes with it…

But why? Because, surprisingly, i always end up exploring the off the beaten path…discovering out of the ordinary and unusual places and get to mingle with interesting and uniquely different groups of people. I get to hear their stories…and they get to hear my stories too….

And that is why, traveling without a map is often more exciting…. because it is by getting lost that I am able to tell a story….not just one but loads of interesting, funny and embarrassing stories!

As an unknown writer wrote, ‘Life goes on and the roads always lead to unexpected destinations…..’

So what are you waiting for? Let’s wander around the world! 🙂


Share your gasm experience of ‘getting lost’ with us…what is your story? 🙂

Categories: Barcelona, Europe, Spain, Weekly Travel Quotes | Tags: , | 18 Comments

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