Helsinki's rooftops (Débora Medeiros)

Helsinki’s rooftops (Débora Medeiros)

Why do I love traveling? To me, it has never really been about sightseeing. Though I eventually stumble upon the main tourist attractions, I rarely go to a place with a checklist of what to see, just like I almost never read the reviews before watching a movie. I like to arrive in a new city knowing just enough to guide my wanderings, but not enough to create unrealistic expectations. So, I usually pick up a map or a few brochures and go see whatever sounds interesting at the moment. It’s much easier to be pleasantly surprised this way.

What I love the most about traveling is the possibility of abandoning my routine  almost completely for a few days and trying to immerse myself in an everyday life that isn’t mine, deciphering other customs, seeing different faces, hearing the sound of another language. I love getting lost and finding my way again, sometimes taking the longest path, sometimes wandering into a café or a bookstore to pass time.

Traveling is remembering that there is much more out there than my quotidian worries and joys — and looking forward to coming back to them with fresh eyes.