Whilst I’ve always said that travel is one of the best forms of self-discovery, I had stopped thinking about this long ago, as I figured that change just happens gradually, and you noticed it down the line.
But nothing has become more glaringly obvious to me at once than the changes I’ve noticed in the last 6 weeks to who I was two or three years ago. I thought I’d write some of the less personal ones down here.
1. That Accent Stays Strong
I’ve previously written that my accent is more neutral than it used to be. Whilst this may be true, it remains indecipherable at times. If I’m left in a room with an Australian or Brit for 5 minutes, the full cascading wrath of the Australian accent descends. I was in Hamburg recently, catching up with a close friend who I hadn’t seen in close to a year. There were a couple of others there, a Pakistani girl with a white-knuckled grasp of English and a German girl with a slightly less firm command over it. At one point I turned to the German girl and asked if she got what I meant. She simply shook her head and told me she never got what I meant.
It might be slightly more neutral, but it’s still there. My experiences in a Krakow hostel recently confirmed my suspicion that I’m not nearly as incomprehensible as others. Faint praise, if any.
2. I Am Boring
I don’t mean I am a boring person, and I don’t think you can call that arrogance. What I mean is that had my 19 year old self (let’s call him Sammy) met me in a hostel now, he would have probably rolled his eyes and moved away from the overly PC, irritatingly skeptical prude who didn’t like drinking in hostel lobbies with fourty Australians and an Irishman.
I can’t take hostel life anymore either, unfortunately (I’ll go into this in more detail in a later blog). God knows I’ll do it to save money, but I get the hell out of there the next morning if I’m stuck in a dorm. I hate sharing floor space, worrying about where I can leave my valuables, charging my tablet in front of strangers, getting woken up by people coming in late, getting changed under the covers, etc.. It’s not new or exciting anymore, and I’m just not as socially open as Sammy was. Sammy would have called me a ‘tourist’, not a real ‘traveller’. Sammy’s an idiot.
3. I Can’t Handle Doors (pun intended)
WHAT THE HELL. I CANNOT OPEN A DOOR ANYMORE. I once saw a rather brilliant web comic which contested that a USB, much like one of Steven Moffat’s Weeping Angels, exists in a certain state until it is observed. One cannot simply not insect the USBB and get it in the computer on the first go.
I have the same issue with keys and doors, except it’s impossible for me to ‘observe’ a key’s correct direction in which to turn it*.
It’s also mighty annoying when you wake up in the middle of the night in a hostel and need to unlock the door to get to the toilet.
Tell me about your grand revelations of self below. Really. I do enjoy reading others’ opinions on this.
*I’ve since decided that this is a terrible analogy, but I really like the Weeping Angels, so it stays.