Vacations: Not an escape, but a reality


Hey, what is your plan this Christmas? I am planning a family vacation.

More often than not you would either hear people saying this or you yourself might have said this to a lot of people. To break free from the daily mundane life we humans resort to vacations which help us gain new experiences, explore the new world and meet new people. While you might think that vacation is a fairly new term and that such experiences have been quite recent, you might want to go back in time.

Vacation history

The term “vacation” was used in America until the middle of the 19th century to refer to the period when teachers and pupils leave the school grounds and go on their own. A vacation was considered a sign of privilege back then.

A time for physical, mental, and spiritual self-improvement as well as pure entertainment, vacations have evolved into a middle-class tradition.

Vacation is rather a very euphonious term when you search for it online and you find calming images of someone relaxing on the beach, soaking in the winter sun in the mountains, reading sitting on a comfortable chair, a long trek in the forest and many more.

The earliest usage of the word vacation was in Geoffrey Chaucer’s 14th-century Canterbury Tales, in the famously bawdy (and alarmingly violent) Wife of Bath’s Prologue:

And every night and day was his custume,

Whan he had leyser and vacacioun

From other worldly occupacioun,

To reden on this book of wikked wyves.

Why do we need a vacation?

The silence of the air, the soft music of the waves and the setting sun, what a beauty. While standing there staring at the sun going down the horizon, I could not help but think that vacations are not an escape from reality, instead, they are the truth.

Sitting in our cubicles from 9 to 6, typing numbers, writing emails, hearing people shouting, and gulping cups of coffee, that is the life that humans today have chosen. This is not just their life, but a hoax that they have believed is their reality. They are so busy living this fake reality, that they have forgotten to catch glimpse of true nature.

In the past our ancestors went on voyages and explorations to know the truth behind what is beyond them, today too we humans plan of vacations and drives to explore what lies beyond the walls of our homes and office. we try to meet new people, get in touch with their reality and try to examine life from a different perspective.

In the past 2-3 years when COVID hit us, we all lost our way and were stuck at home. It was during this time that we could not go to work, so it came to our home, we all realised what a mental toll work and staying indoors can bring to us. This is when most humans reallsied the importance of travelling and how it is not just for luxury, but it is key to a healthy brain and body.

Vacation the true reality

There is a link between travel and rising creativity, according to studies. New sounds, new environments, new smells, new languages, and new tastes have an impact on our brain’s neural pathways and revitalise our synapses.

So, next time you plan a vacation do not think of it as a burden, but make it a ritual and become one with yourself and experience the true reality by going on a vacation. Learn from the nature, indulge in new activities and discover the real you.

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