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Travellers' questions that don't fit anywhere else This is an opportunity to ask any question, and post any notice you wish that doesn't fit into one of the other sections.
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  #1  
Old 17 Mar 2005
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Psychology of travel

Does anyone know of a good book or research related to the "why" of traveling? Why does the drive to travel run your life while it does nothing for the guy next door? Why do we have this urge? I'd like to find out if there's a scientific explanation for it.
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  #2  
Old 17 Mar 2005
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There is a joy in being mad that none but madmen know.

So there.

John
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  #3  
Old 17 Mar 2005
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Adventurous spirit maybe,
You know like Columbus, the guy who discovered the american continent..
Yes he was mad, he called them indians !

Matt

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  #4  
Old 17 Mar 2005
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Quote:
Originally posted by Matt595:
Adventurous spirit maybe,
You know like Columbus, the guy who discovered the american continent..
Yes he was mad, he called them indians !

Matt

The Vikings were there first.....

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Old 17 Mar 2005
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I would suggest you pick up a few books by Bruce Chatwin. He was an English author who wrote a lot on what he called the 'nomadic imperative' a feeling that some of us have that forces us to keep on moving.

Nicely, Chatwin says that this is, in some cases, actually a healthier way of living than standing still.

I think that he quotes an indian proverb as saying something like "life is a bridge, cross over it but build no house on it" in what is probably the best book of his to start with - The Songlines.

Heartily recommended for anyone who has ever wondered 'what is wrong with me that I just can't sit still?'

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Old 17 Mar 2005
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Yeah, Bruce Chatwin is fun to read, because it's more than just a travelogue. I reckon it's the hunger for life. Instead of staying at home and waiting for life to pass by, the traveller seeks the beauty in life.

The only book I came across offering a "psycological" view of this "hunger for life" is unfortunately only in German written by Ulrich Aufmuth. The title is "Lebenshunger".
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Old 17 Mar 2005
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Robert M. Pirsig briefly deals with it in his book “Zen and the art of motorcycle maintenance”
I remember very little from the book, which I read about 10 years ago. What I do remember is that he touches on many feelings common to travelers and motorcyclists. It has very little to do with motorcycle maintenance and perhaps more with relationships, but that is the essence of what sets us apart from non-travelers isn’t it? There’s very little science in his book but it’s very enlightening all the same.

Don’t worry though… I’m sure scientists will isolate the wanderlust gene sooner or later and then you can request to have it switched on or off in either yourself or your children! Me… I’m just hoping they can make my hair grow back!
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Old 17 Mar 2005
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I agree with Steve. Mind, the Irish (St. Brendan) and also the Welsh (Madog) were also there first.
I'm sure that helps.
John
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  #9  
Old 17 Mar 2005
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Typical western mentality...

Actually the Inuit were first when they walked accross the ice thousands of years ago and later became the tribes that today are the "american indians"
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Old 17 Mar 2005
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Quite right, I stand corrected, it was pretty arrogant when I think about it.

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  #11  
Old 17 Mar 2005
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Yes "Erik the red" was one of the first european vikings, after inuits, they were adventurous too.
Though Eriks purpose wasn't to discover but to find a new land..as he was researched for murder.
I spoke more about "spirit" than right or wrong of history.

Luckystriker; "zen the art of motorcycle maintenance", an old man gave me a bunch of books before moving out of his house and I have the book you mention.
I thougt it was a book on maintenance, so I didn't read it.
I'll give it a try, maybe it will improve my skills!

Matt




[This message has been edited by Matt595 (edited 17 March 2005).]
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  #12  
Old 18 Mar 2005
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I am not totally sure about this, but I think that they have found evidence off the West Coast that Chinese explorers pre-dated any Europeans...

But as you say, the Inuit were there way before everyone else.

I enjoyed 'Zen and the Art of MM' when I read it about 10 years ago, but it was panned in another thread on this site a while ago. It is a bit of a slog, but well worth getting through in my view.

Enjoy all the reading.

Mike
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Old 21 Mar 2005
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All books of Heinrich Harrer are immensely recommend.

And there is a book calles 'snowchild' by a french guy about a year long trip with his wife and kid. Took them on horses and sledge through North Canada. Temps as low as -30° and this late seventies.

Question why people do this, how they do it, how they feel / work with it...
Gets attention in any good travel book. I just try to avoid commercialised things.
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  #14  
Old 21 Mar 2005
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The long hunt. I think there is something in the human makeup that causes a few to take off on a out of the norm journey. Even among nomadics someone had to find the new hunting grounds. And just as sweet berries have vitamin C so people crave the sweet but end up keeping up the intake of vitain C. Long journeys to see what is over the next hill also finds better hunting grounds. Since not too many of us need better hunting grounds now perhaps this traveling about enriches our lives and those around us in many other ways.
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  #15  
Old 23 Mar 2005
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You need to read this to figure out some of the things that set us apart from the rest

http://list.gpz1100.com/themotorcyclist.htm

Norm

[This message has been edited by Namron (edited 23 March 2005).]
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