My Travel Style

Solo. I’m a natural loner. I function best when I travel alone, with complete control over my schedules, my choice of destinations, and my means of transportation. Compromising with others over the whens and wheres and hows isn’t my cup of tea.

Selective. I’m not the sort of traveller who will carpet-bomb an entire continent with “Diego Was Here” markers, hopping from place to place like a nomad. With my time and resources both painfully limited, I invest them in journeys to those few places that best suit my interests. This ties in with the next point, which is…

Repetitive, where merited. If I fall in love with a destination, I’d happily go back more than once. Japan was the first country to tug at my heartstrings strongly enough to warrant an annual return visit, and Korea has now earned that same distinction.

Moderate, cost-wise. My standards for travel necessities are a few notches higher than bare-bones, but far below top-end luxury. I like saving money as much as the next chap, but sharing bedrooms or bathrooms with strangers is something I’d rather avoid, which means that dormitory-style spaces don’t often figure in my bookings. For example, whenever I’m in Japan, I tend to avoid hostels on the one hand and high-end ryokan on the other, preferring the splendid mid-range compromise of the Japanese business hotel.

Non-adventurous. I like areas with reliable transportation, low crime rates, Catholic churches in major cities (can’t skip Mass on Sundays!), and places that take credit cards. This isn’t a dig at adventure travel in general, but more of a reflection of my own personality: that of a timid, mildly antisocial, non-beachgoing (in fact, beach-hating) lad who enjoys peace, order, cleanliness, and strict train timetables. (Is it any wonder I visit Japan so often?) Thailand is the closest place I’ve been to an adventure destination, but that was a parent-paid family trip rather than a personal choice – and we never even left Bangkok.

(Mostly) selfie-free. That’s right, I (almost) never take pictures of myself when I travel, only of the things and places I see. Why on earth would anyone spoil a snapshot of beautiful scenery or incredible architecture by blocking whatever’s in the background with their face? (^_^) I say that half in jest, of course: many of my family and friends take selfies, and I don’t necessarily think less of anyone who does so. That said, this occasionally fatal practice makes very little sense to me and it’s something I’d rather avoid altogether, except for the rare snapshot sent to the folks back home to prove that I am (regrettably) still alive.

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