There are many online arguments about the the long-term impact of travel on children and the value of investing in travel as a family when kids are young. My son, Devon O’Shaughnessy, is a freshman in high school and has traveled the world with me as I’ve grown Ciao Bambino over the past 14 years. Does he remember every trip? No. Has he appreciated all the different experiences at different ages and stages? Most of the time. The greatest gift of his travels is evident in how our journeys together have shaped the way he sees the world. What follows is a poem Devon recently wrote inspired by his travels.
6 continents, 36 countries, 14 years
Seen people thrive in the most affluent places, but also in the most desperate
Seen prosperity born from blessings, but also from curses
All the diversity in the world and only one consistent trait among those with opportunity
From the ever-advancing cities of China to the rudimentary tribes in Kenya
From the booming technological businesses of San Francisco to the struggling, desperate people of Cambodia
From those liberated by democracy, to those oppressed by dictators in unjust conditions
From those whose lives appear to be a constant vacation, to those whose days are plagued by starvation
The converse is also true, a nation with collaboration can only function if citizens have individual gifts and differentiations
Diversity isn’t present in a community, it is community
The relentless drive of man to ameliorate the fate of their people
The unyielding effort of man to collaborate and annihilate the agony and struggle of their people
The ultimate sacrifice
From warriors in the Masai who fight off savage lions with wooden spears, to soldiers who fight selflessly for the U.S army
From the struggling citizens of Laos who give fresh food to the otherwise uneducated and starving monks, to those … everywhere
In every family, blood or not, we all sacrifice out of love with all we can muster and all we have
Only when we find this truth do we realize how obscured and utterly lost we were before
The overwhelming majority of people are unaware of these marvelous and stunning facets of human nature
Travel changes lives
Travel is the way to understand the raw essence and innate beauty of man
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