{guest post} putting the wander back in wanderlust with danielle;

{i’m currently in philly, foraging for vegan philly cheesesteaks, battling bad wi-fi, and petting puppies. while i am on my solo-lady road trip, i have some guest posts for you all! this one is a lovely post from one of my favorite people, danielle. her blog makes me want to get my passport stamped a prolific amount, eat fancy foodstuffs, and move to nyc. i know you all will love her. }

Hello, new friends. I’m Danielle from danielle abroad. (No, I’m not abroad at the moment… but I have been and I will be again soon!) I’m thrilled to be guest posting today while Miss Mackenzie enjoys the open road. She is most definitely a gal after my own heart, and I’m so glad to know her.

While I’m here, I though I’d share some thoughts on my favorite way to travel: wandering. It’s an activity just as enjoyable in a foreign land as it is in your home city. Trouble is, between texting, checking email, and Google Map-ping on our cell phones, we just don’t do it enough any more. And don’t even get me started on GPS… I use one sometimes, and I understand how useful it can be, but would it hurt so much to pay attention to our surrounding every now and again?

Is getting lost really ever that bad?

No, I would argue that getting lost is actually the best part of wandering, and thus, travel. It’s how we discover hidden gems and meet locals (excuse me, sir, do you know where…?) and come to understand the true personality of any place. This is how to do so:

Look at a map. Bring a map with you mostly defeats the purpose, but I’d recommend at least glancing at one beforehand. Knowledge of the general area is key—it’ll eliminate most fears associated with getting lost and ensure that you don’t end up somewhere you really don’t want to be.

Wear comfortable shoes.

Tune in. You’ll miss the whole purpose of wandering if you don’t! And don’t you dare just look straight ahead, okay? Notice the distinctive sign, bit of graffiti, small garden, and that building that looks completely out of place. Watch as neighborhoods evolve one into the other. Paying attention will also help when you wrap up your day of wandering and need to get back to wherever you came from.

People-watch & watch people. At some point, sit down a bench or a stoop and enjoy the steady flow of passerbys In a not at all weird way, it’ll be like getting a glimpse into strangers’ lives. And if there seems to be a trend in any direction, follow them. They may lead you to stumble upon a flea market, art fair, food cart, or another fun community find. Use sound judgment, of course; you don’t want to be unsafe for the sake of being curious.

I hope that you too are able to wander sometime soon. Take your time. Enjoy the adventure. You’ll find your way back, eventually.

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