Travel is a very personal matter. Often it brings to light what we really are, for better or worse, especially if we are able to learn something about ourselves for how we feel while we are maybe a little more vulnerable, out of our house, far from the everyday routine and from the guardians we feel to have, going sometimes towards the unpredictable.
THE "HOPPER" TYPE
This is the one who prefers the journey to the destination, who prefers the places of transition than those of arrival. Edward Hopper was a master in immortalizing in his paintings the thoughts, gazes, dreams and loneliness of all those who are in these non-places full of life and transformation: ports, train stations, motorway service stations, airports, motels, gas stations, places where the destinies cross often without getting in touch, where nostalgia, wounds and expectations fill the airwith poetry.
THE “FLAUBERT” TYPE
This is the one who hates the place where he lives and finds relief only when he can travel to an exotic place that, for some reasons, reflects a lot more his lifestyle and beliefs.
Gustave Flaubert, the author of Madame Bovary, was literally disgusted by the French bourgeoisie of his time, hypocritical, snob, racist, empty, and for this reason, in 1849, he left Rouen to live his exotic fable, sailing to Alexandria of Egypt. There, he fell in love with the light and colours, with the chaos of people and animals, with thesoundscape that finally met his lively imagination, bringing it closer to a reality less phony and contrived, more human.
The "Flaubert" type looks for an exotic place or situation that is not necessarily far away, but that somehow looks infinitely closerto his ideal of beauty and truth than the world in which he lives every day.
THE "HUYSMANS" TYPE
This is the one who every time thinks: "I would have better stayed at home”.
In his novel “Against nature”, the writer Joris-Karl Huysmans gives voice to the Duke des Esseintes, a misanthrope aristocrat who lives alone in a big house in the suburbs of Paris and who, from time to time, thanks to a book or a painting, is taken from desire to discover a faraway country but then always find a good reason to stay at home or to think that he had better not to leave.
The Huysmans type basically hates people, troubles and accidents, feels deceived by advertisements that never tellthe truth and is convinced that the imagination is the best way to travel: cheap, comfortable, satisfactory.
THE "NIETZSCHE" TYPE
This is the one who would like to discover unexplored lands but, as there are no more left on this planet, heis content with learning things he did not know.
Nietzsche in fact suggested to learn from our own history that the world is continuity and belonging, well beyond the boundaries of the individual existence: travel may be the best way to deeply understand this principle and benefit from this knowledge.
The Nietzsche type travels to improve himself, to return home with a richersoul, to expand his knowledge and elevate his thoughts.
The Nietzsche type knows that time is valuable and the life full of endless possibilities.
THE "WORDSWORTH" TYPE
This is the one who uses nature as an antidepressant, purifier, decompressor.
Wordsworth, the poet to whom the English Lake District owes its tourist reputation, preached the healing power of nature, which cancels the anxiety of urban life, the envy aroused by competition, the frustration of small failures.
The Wordsworth type finds in nature the antidote for the sufferings and needs to spend all the holidays he has far from the cities, in the midst of dramatic and silent landscapes, absorbing the tenacity of the oak trees, the calmness of thelakes, the adaptability of the migratory birds, the strength of the sea.
THE "KEROUAC" TYPE
This is the one who loves the "Fly & Drive".
For him, the holiday is on the road and not necessarily making reservations in advance. He is just guided by the road, he enjoys the landscapes he crosses, he is not at all interested in relax: the centre of his trip is the stop he chooses and the way to get there.
5 cities in 10 days is the ideal trip for him.
(post inspired by "The art of travel" by Alain de Botton)