I have had the fortune of having traveled intensely for the past 20 years for my job. It was always fast-paced, mostly ground travel (tour bus–I was a roadie for various musical acts through the years), but lots of air travel as well. And while I love love love to travel, the truth is that it isn’t great in any way for our environment.
So I, like many others, are trying to understand how we can still travel with our remaining years on this vast planet, and enjoy it without a ton of guilt. It won’t be easy to slim it all down, to be more mindful in our approach, but it will be vital. There is no more time to look the other way or to pretend it isn’t happening.
Indeed, traveling wisely will be the only option for those of us who care about how we leave the planet. Because we really don’t know how much longer we all have before we exhaust our beautiful host of her crude oil that we’ve come to value above all else. (And I am not exaggerating. We worship Fossil Fuels in our current day and age. No country is not directly involved with this commodity as a base for their economy. Our population growth, which is entirely detrimental to the survival of our planet, directly correlates to the exploitation and use of fossil fuels.)
I invite you to consider the idea of practicing the idea of intentional travel while on your home turf. Plan your trips to parts of town wisely. Combine a shopping trip with a stop at a State Park and get some hiking in. Enjoy the scenery, the time off the devices. Look at the topography anew. Indulge your senses in a revitalizing way. And always remember to leave no trace. Pack it in, pack it out.
Travel is so important to me. It is important to so many others, as it has become conventional to go on trips more spontaneously. We hold travel as a right, a value, a badge of success. We need to rethink our relationship to this concept. It is a luxury. It is not guaranteed. Treat each trip with reverence for your good fortune while on this planet. And consider how you can travel as responsibly as possible when you do plan a trip further afield than where you find yourself.
Travel inspires. Go be inspired. Pay reverence to our host planet, and go forth and enjoy!