This morning at the Acai bowl place (if you don't know what Acai is that's kind of the point of this post), there were some German tourists in line ahead of me. They were asking what is Acai, while struggling to understand how to pronounce it and also the concept of how and why it's served in a bowl with a bunch of other fruits, granola, honey or other toppings.
They ordered a bowl that the girl suggested and then the man attempted to pay but struggled with the payment system that required him to sign his name on a screen. (Side note: In Europe, its chip and PIN based not signature based which makes way more sense to me). I stepped forward and helped him through the process. Then they waited for their food, still talking about this Acai thing they had just ordered and I'm sure wondering what they were going to get in the end.
This weekend my family and I leave on a trip to Japan for 10 days. All 5 of us our going. Our first family trip together.
Aracely and I have forever wanted to take the boys on a trip with us and here we are, right on the cusp of our big adventure. We can't wait. For one thing, rarely do I take this amount of time off from work. Second, we have done trips separately but not as a family. We are very excited.
What I observed this morning is exactly the reason we have wanted our kids to travel abroad. This German couple today was having a totally new experience with something I find completely common in my experience. But for them, they had to slow down, ask questions, consider their choices and struggle with a simple payment transaction.
Traveling to foreign lands gives you a perspective on the world you can't get any other way. You see the world through the eyes of others. It causes you to think. Slow down. Even feel uncomfortable and clumsy. You have to depend on others to help you. Japan is on a different level since it is a complete culture shift. It's one of my favorite places.
I hope to share and chronicle our journey here.