‘To see the world, things dangerous to come to, to see behind walls, draw closer, to find each other, and to feel. That is the purpose of life.’ - Walter Mitty
I’ve always been referred to as a real life Walter Mitty, contemplating my next adventure when one is still ongoing. I never went abroad until a school trip took me to Köln when I was 17, but I used to holiday all over the UK up until then. You always hear the notion that ‘travel broadens the mind’ and it was something that I never really came to grips with until I decided to challenge the theory...
Towards the end of last year I set myself a challenge of going abroad at least every two months over the next year in order to a) test this theory out, but most importantly b) to have a good time exploring the continent!
What this turned out to be was a travel through nine European capitals in nine months, a travel baby if you will. I travelled to and through nine countries; from Monaco to Sweden, from Stockholm in December, up until Berlin, with LBA in September. The outcome was not only some interesting stories to tell the proverbial grandkids; I had dinner by chance with a French film director who works with Rihanna, Nike, Frank Ocean etc, but I also felt a lot more at ease within myself and my mental health came out the other side a lot better for the experiences.
Perhaps another reason for this is the fact that to seven of the nine destinations, I travelled alone, something I had never done and would never have dreamed of doing but allowed me to dart around the cities very quickly and I ended up reflecting on the day a lot more in depth.
In my case, travel has definitely broadened my mind, immersing yourself in different cultures, meeting new people, exploring the art and architecture, has definitely had an impact onto the way I think about architecture, and life in general for that fact.