If there's one thing that many —if not all— globetrotters can agree on is that traveling is a very fulfilling experience. Let me tell you, I haven't been infected with wanderlust, but after going on a spur-of-the-moment road trip with two co-workers, I completely agree.
The impulsive adventure began at the office holiday party after learning we had a week-long vacation. "Hey, why not go on a road trip?" Next thing you know, three of us were on the road on Christmas Day, ready to conquer the world in a nearly 20-hour drive.
Despite being very hesitant about this trip (for many reasons, including the fact that I've known my colleagues for a little over a month), it was one hell of a journey, and here's why:
You have no choice but to coexist.
This is not a bad thing at all; in fact, this is probably the best part of the trip. Embarking on lengthy conversations with basically two complete strangers can be quite the encounter. Everything from debates to what's the best rock band to cheesy jokes can go down in a four-door sedan. It's a rewarding feeling that you won't get with any conversation over dinner or on the phone.
You discover the East Coast beauties.
There's nothing more beautiful than sightseeing as you drive. You legit learn how to appreciate the little things in life, like palm trees transitioning to pine trees and the simplicity of a starry night. You can even tally off states such as Georgia, the Carolinas, Virginia, and Maryland from your bucket list. Each and every one of those states have their own magic. And yes, you will notice from the highway.
You unplug from the world.
For someone who works in news, it's very hard to disconnect from the world. And although it was not my intention, it just happened that way. Forget the phone, the laptop, or television, the only source of news I had was everything I heard on the streets. Yea, I had friends and family members who were upset for not "keeping in touch" during this trip, but I would never trade my inner tranquility for anything in this world. Disconnect for once and you'll understand.
New York is a melting pot wonderland.
My co-workers and I live in Miami; it really can't get any more cultural than that, or so we thought. Whether I was walking the streets, riding the subways, strolling the Brooklyn Bridge, or devouring $1 pizza, I realized that The Big Apple is truly the melting pot of the world. In every corner you will discover a fusion of different nationalities, ethnicities, and cultures, and that, to me, is truly phenomenal.
You learn to live. Period.
As mentioned earlier, I was very hesitant about this trip. Primarily because growing up I've had a love-hate relationship with New York. This is the state my parents migrated to from Nicaragua in the late '70s escaping a revolution. It's also the city where they dealt with a lot hardships as immigrants. The last time I visited New York was 15 years ago to rescue my brother who lived homeless for two years in his car or would sleep in subways. I was convinced, before this trip, that no Statue of Liberty, no lively city lights, and no Central Park, could give me a change of heart. But I was wrong.
This "out-of-the-blue" trip has taught me how easy it is to forgive and forget. How easy it is to get along with strangers, despite the age gap and whether they listen to Marilyn Manson or Cuban Timba. It taught me to make decisions and live with no regrets. And that, is what I can wholly describe as a fulfilling experience.
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