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Haven't we travelled enough?

The object of travel is to return to the place we began and know it for the first time.

That is my take on TS Eliot's observation: “We shall not cease from exploration, and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time.” GK Chesterton said, “The whole object of travel is not to set foot on foreign land; it is at last to set foot on one’s own country as a foreign land.” According to Marcel Proust the real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes.

Hannah and I, in our late 60’s, like the thought of staying put. Last year we went to Colorado to see her family, and over Christmas we saw our son and his family in Melbourne and visited Tasmania. On our return I suggested we go travelling no more and Hannah found it a happy thought.

Blue zones are the locations in the world where people live longest. Travelling is not one of the things they have in common.

We have put in the miles: America, South East Asia, southern England and a lot of Australia. At each homecoming we learned something more about our home. We know what our home place is. It won’t be the end of the world if we stop travelling it.


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