On Why Travel Is Good for Writers

I like all the things you don’t know when you live in another country.

When I went to Tokyo for the first time, I took a train from the airport to the middle of town. I left the train station, and I lit a cigarette, looked around and I thought, ‘Oh, no one else is smoking.’ And then I looked and I didn’t see any trash cans, and I didn’t see any trash. So I put out the cigarette and put it in the cuff of my pants. And then I asked at the hotel and they explained that I couldn’t smoke on the street.

But I like that about going to another country. You watch the other people and do what they do. It makes you more observant….

As long as you’ve got your observant glasses on, you notice everything. 

David Sedaris


4 thoughts on “On Why Travel Is Good for Writers

  1. wonderful observation. So true about travel. you learn so much when you get out of the box and see the world from someone else’s eyes, even better if that someone else is a different system altogether. Its amazing the world is surviving living by very different rules in pretty much country. Kinda makes you wonder why do you follow the rules created by others. Make your own, and who knows that might become a system one day :)

  2. I live in China and we walked around with that deer in headlights look everytime we went somewhere new. Nothing was familar. Soon it became routine and we started to recognize that look in other new comers. After almost 2 years here we are offering a helping hand to others and help them settle in or just explain the where or how in English what they cannot communicate with a local shop worker. Negotiating a new culture is exciting as long as you keep an open mind ;)

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