Alexandra Greenspan

Things you appreciate from traveling abroad

Disclaimer: I made this list on Friday as I waited at Bahnhof Flughafen (Zürich Airport train station) to reach the Google Zürich office after a four hour plane ride after arriving to the airport in Tel Aviv at 4am to make a 7am flight. And I was completely sleep deprived. This list is not definitive.

My bags as I left for this summer JFK Airport - May 19: All I took with me for my summer working abroad.

Things you appreciate from traveling abroad

  • Learning how to pack efficiently.
  • Friendly airport passport-checkers.
  • Traveling backward in time through the power of time zones.
  • That you didn't watch a movie everyone's been talking about when it was in theaters…
  • Because now it's complimentary with your flight ticket.
  • The information booth at the airport.
  • Real life paper maps.
  • That it seems like every other country besides the US has bathroom stall doors that go all the way to the floor.
  • That numbers are universal.
  • The musicality of language when you can't understand the words.
  • Figuring out what a word means in your native language…
  • Even if it's just because the words look almost the same.
  • People-watching.
  • Public transportation.
  • The kindness of strangers.
  • Not always having contact with the rest of the world through the internet…
  • But still finding public locations that have Wi-Fi.
  • That just getting from one train station to another becomes a major accomplishment.
  • That there are so many people with so many lives moving in different directions all at once.
  • That you feel like you belong in the world both a little bit more and a little bit less…
  • Because there's always more traveling to be done.
  • That at the end of the day, there's really no place like home.
  • That this planet is your home.

flowers on the riverbank in Zurich Zürich, Switzerland - June 16: Flowers on the bank of the Lake of Zürich.

Author

Alexandra Greenspan

In third grade, Alexandra wrote a book titled "Bear Bear and the Mystery of the Magic Leaf." It won the Room 21 award for best book. She hopes to put her award-winning writing skills to good use.