Something special happens to us when we travel. Sometimes, the sensory receptors of stationary creatures are clogged by the long duration of time that is spent in one place. When we elevate our noses from the daily grind, we see more of what is happening around us. When we are out of our element we–by necessity–become more aware of our surroundings. Good travelers use this newfound awareness to enable them to interact with the world around them and allow it to mold their experience. A trip away from home, regardless of length, objective, or distance, allows us to leave behind our daily routine–a routine that compels us to worry about tomorrow and yesterday. Being away from home we are liberated from the past and future tense and we allow ourselves to ask What am I doing today? We allow our senses and our heart to guide us. Thus, the time spent traveling often turn into our most vivid memories, our richest experiences. We return from our journeys having learned something new–not just about a place, but about ourselves.
When we come home we share our stories with friends and family. I am always inspired by the travel stories I hear and always learn something new, whether it be about set netting in Alaska or what a Palestinian thinks about America. When I can’t go out and see the world, hearing these stories helps bring the world a little closer to me. While I Was Away was created in February of 2011 with the hope that perhaps the world will be brought a little closer to you, too.