Monday, November 15, 2010

One problem with traveling

As an addendum to my last post, I see one major problem with my passion:

It doesn’t provide a contribution to the world really.

Now if my hobby were crocheting I’d at least be creating something new, or if it were keeping an orderly house I’d be contributing to my family and civilization. Or even if my passion were playing basketball, like it is Jacob’s, it would be something to do on the side. But traveling right now is full time.

When I was a piano teacher, I had only 19 students. But I know that for 19 people, I was their Piano Teacher, and I’ll play an important role in their memories, as well as hopefully provided a useful skill, for the rest of their lives.

Meanwhile, I meet new people daily here, but most of them are just shallow acquaintances.

As far as I can see it, I’m providing just three small services by traveling:

One, we’re boosting the local economy by visiting.

Two, we’re serving a bit as ambassadors for America, and a little bit, for Mormons, in that we’re helping build good relations with natives in different countries. Kinda like missionaries.

Three, maybe we can share a global perspective with others in some way.

However, if we’re going to do this long term I’ll have to have more motivation than that.

Either we will stay long enough in each place to (one or more of the following)

-Learn a language

-Educate our children

-Hold a calling at church

-Monetize and capitalize and provide a service from traveling

-Build lasting friendships

Or my passion may have to be relegated to the background when Jacob and I have kids, allowed to happen in spurts. Because just to drift for our entire lives, while I would enjoy that, I don’t know that we would have a sort of permanent impact in the world. Is it possible to really make a difference….as a nomad?

I’m afraid of being a passive observer of life all over the world, rather than an active participant in one small corner.


PS Thanks to Jefferson and Erica, we are officially obsessed with playing Scramble on the iPad. We play tons of matches daily. And while I won at first, Jacob has gradually began dominating the game and it’s making him very pleased with himself.

PPS Today Jacob sat down at the piano and sightread some hymns. What the heck?

I learn something new about him every day.

Today, it was that he can learn how to play the piano just by looking sideways at the music. Literally. He looks at it sideways, and he can see if he should move his hand right or left on the keyboard.


Sally Lou said...

oh why don't they write music sideways!? that makes so much more sense!

Astyn said...

Interesting post. I love that you write such thoughtful things on your blog.

I think I understand this feeling though. At some point I imagine everyone longs to contribute in a meaningful way and really connect to other people.

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