Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Traveling like Paulo Coelho

I'm hoping that the breezy days of summer have finally arrived. Though I don't like the heat, the summer does bring with it a sense of dreaming and imaging our lives in new places. In many ways, it's more of a renewal than spring - graduations, weddings, vacations. I find that a lot of my happiest memories happened during this season, and many of them happened when I traveled on my own.

Paulo Coelho wrote one of my favorite books, The Alchemist, and I love its celebration of the journey. Coelho seems to prize travel as the most valuable way to spend our time. It's the best way to learn, about ourselves and the world around us. In addition to his many books on the subject, he now writes several blogs: Wordpress (, Myspace ( & Facebook ( He is equally present in media sharing sites such as Youtube ( and Flickr ( He shares his thoughts with us, as well as his images.

On, he wrote recently wrote a post with some travel advice, giving us an idea of how he conducts the details of his travels. He avoids museums and hangs out in bars. He doesn't buy material things, and he invests in the people around him, knowing that he understands them and they understand him, just by virtue of being human. In his quintessential Coelho style, he remains open to the magic that happens when we travel, when we get outside any sense of a comfort zone, and just allow life to happen. More than good advice about how to travel, he provides us with good advice on how to live.

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