Recently at a large table in a funky bar in Prague with dubstep for background music, I drank cheap Czech beer with new friends. My companions, whom I had met 12 hours before, were world travelers.
They traveled the world for work with no set home. They compared the heat of Jakarta to the wintery winds of the Himalayas. There was no reminiscing about “back home” because for my new friends there was no going back, only forward.
Travels are often lumped all together, and yet we are not the same. I will live in Germany for at least two years. They live in a place at most for two weeks. What we see, and know of these places is different. I know grocery stores, family restaurants, and coffee shops. They know cool bars, chic hotels and wild clubs. Each type of traveler understands something different about the places they have come to know.
What we call home is different too. For the constant traveler, hotel beds and airplane seats are home. For the vacationer, home is what they leave behind and where they always return. For some home is a hammock, a van, or a sleeping bag. For other home is an apartment you furnished from scratch.
Whether we are vacationers, nomads, expats, or wanderers, we still share the drive to move, the desire to see beyond what we have known. It is this shared ever-expanding viewpoint that quickly binds travelers, no matter the type, to one another. We recognize the wide-eyed searching in each other’s eyes and we call it home.