You know, I've been hearing this term used a great deal as of late. So much so that within my scope of life, it has even become somewhat of a household term. (hello young dreamers!) But what does Wanderlust actually mean? In the literal sense, that is.
dictionary jargon: a strong longing for travel or impulse toward wandering.
Now what does that mean to YOU?
In my personal definition of the aforementioned, wanderlust and curiosity naturally go hand in hand, and contrary to what y'all may be guessing, travel, albeit a super gnarly bonus, does not need to be present in order for curiosity to be sparked. (SAY WHATTTT)
So I guess what I am trying to say is that for me, wanderlust is more about exploration than anything else. And what a beautiful idea that is, as it can entail exploring a physical space as much as it can simultaneously describe a journey of self. (Who am I today?!!?)
China, you taught me so much.
and while I sit here attempting to write something of substance, I feel panicked and a little sad as I try not to let go of any of it. I want to relive the summer, over and over again and still taste every moment as vividly as the first time it happened.
China is an absolutely fascinating place with an incredible amount of history, culture, and exceptional cuisine (!!) Hearing about it is one thing, but actually being there is a voluntarily admission to be transported to another world, where life flows to the interesting rhythm of the sleepy countryside and the buzzing cities.
During my short month in country, I was fortunate enough to explore several vastly different regions of China. One of which was the Yunnan province in Southwestern China - home to nearly half of the ethnic minority groups in the country, rolling countrysides, majestic mountains and those relishing in the quieter side of life. And what would a trip to China be without allowing myself to be part of the hustle and bustle - the iconic skyline of Shanghai with a population of 23 million and the equally incredible city of Beijing, home to some of China's oldest and most historical structures as well as the architecturally progressive Bird's Nest and Water Cube at The Olympic Green.
When you travel you explore the physical world around you, of course: you get a first hand look into a life unlike your own. Traditions, food, viewpoints all so different, but equally valid. The physical exploration quickly allows you to reflect on what is right before your eyes and in some ways forces you to step out on the ledge - to that place of most discomfort and anxiety. It is in that space that you do most of your growing.
I'm very excited to finally share some of the images I made this summer as they do a better job of describing my soul and sense of exploration than any of the crazy thoughts I gathered during this stretch of text. Enjoy!