To Travel is To Live


To travel is to live – Hans Andersen

It’s been a long time since I stepped foot on a different continent, although different reads strange in this context, since Europe was once home. But that’s exactly what my family and I did recently. We traded familiar landscapes for the invigorating air of change.

Four countries in two weeks — more than we planned — but that’s what traveling does. It reawakens our sense of adventure. Demands we move, move, move. See more. Touch more. Breathe new air.  Memories, so many memories, will sort out in time, but for now, this is how I look at the past two weeks:

I look at every country/city/region as an individual human being with character. For example: (1)   Berlin is an energetic young lady with an eye toward the future while mindful of family’s tragic past. (2) Bucharest is a middle-aged mother cautiously rebuilding her life after a disastrous relationship. (3) France (the coast) is a lady of undetermined age, who successfully spends most of her money on her looks.  (4) Northwest Italy, the natural beauty, lives life to the fullest, dismissing regrets with a smile.  When places are categorized as such in my brain, they’re friends I sorely miss.

As jetlag lifts and culture shock recedes, I shall revisit each place and share my experiences. In the interim, just as traveling refreshes one’s spirit, returning home is a gift to the weary soul.

Part of my gift came courtesy Carol Child, Editor of The Scheherazade Chronicles, who published my short story,  A Memory, upon return. Such sweet, welcoming present.

A short description and link to article follow.

A thirteen-year-old girl is sitting cross-legged in a tent no larger than a closet, reading. The tent is on a beach along the Black Sea Coast.

A MEMORY, by Silvia Villalobos


16 responses to “To Travel is To Live

  1. I LOVE your descriptions of Europe. I think you have “nailed” the descriptions, however I have only been to northern Europe. I loved the character and feel of Europe. It felt like home to me even though the U.S. is my home. I enjoyed exploring areas from where my ancestors came… maybe that is why it felt like home.

    You radiate the joy of your experiences, but now you can absorb your thoughts and feelings while you kick back and relax. It sounds like your vacation was extra special. Thanks for sharing!

  2. Hi Sylvia – fascinating descriptive ideas about the four cities or areas … clever and I can visualise them … so glad you had a happy time – and learnt lots more about your ancestry and roots and then how you transitioned to the States … so glad your short story A Memory was there to cheer you home … take care – cheers Hilary

  3. I love to travel, especially to places different than my world. My favorite way is to rent an apartment, house, etc., shop and cook and see how the people live instead of staying in a hotel. You have given me the bug to get on a plane!

  4. I have never been Europe, only travelled in Asia. I wish to travel Europe in winter. Let’s see when the dream comes true. Happy travelling!

    • Well, I’ve never traveled to Asia. Shame, I know. Lots to see, I’m sure.
      I would highly recommend Europe, any part really. In winter, more so south Europe, parts of the west. Thank you for stopping by and the comment.

      • Take it easy, Silvia. There is no shame in where we choose to travel. I’ll visit South Europe, but I am keen to see green skylights in the Nordic region. It’s a coincidence that I also want you to visit South Asia next time. -Best

      • No real shame whatsoever, only a figure of speech. Am fond of metaphors. :) Happy travels.

  5. What a wonderful journey you have had, Silvia, both traveling to Europe with your family and returning to your roots. I have always wanted to travel to Europe but have yet to do so. Thank you for sharing your travels and related thoughts. Welcome home to SoCal, still home to me even though I no longer live there. Thanks for posting the link to your story on my Scheherazade literary review. I hope your followers will visit and read, for your story is beautifully written and with such evocative imagery. It made me feel like I was on a Black Sea beach — another intriguing place I’ve wanted to visit.


    • Thank you, Samantha for reading, as well as for hosting me on Scheherazade It was my honor and pleasure. Considering I had just returned from Europe (Romania), finding the Black Sea story on there felt as if I never left — either as an adult or child.

  6. I could see/feel your descriptions of those various places. They could be my friends, too.

  7. What a perfect post! We just got back from a three week, seven country extravaganza in Europe. I’m posting about it. Looking forward to more posts from you!

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