I have many fears, as I am sure most people do. Some of my fears are common (war is on the top of that list) and some are not so common, I think.
I have overcome many fears since my traveling life has begun. One was traveling alone ~ could I do it? Could I be happy being alone in a foreign place? I have conquered that fear. Being alone in a foreign country is more liberating than fearful. Its an amazing feeling walking through European cities or Chinese cities and having a feeling of belonging, despite being stared at. Taking in all the sights to see, the smells, people watching. Experiencing a whole new way to live. Adjusting as well as you can to the language. I am happy to say that the fear of this unknown was a good one to overcome.
Last night I conquered a personal fear. Eating out in public. I have eaten in restaurants here in China ~ I don’t always like doing that but I have done it (the noisy eating I will never get used to!). But there is one thing I have wanted to do and couldn’t work up the nerve to do, until last night.
BBQ is very popular here. There is a BBQ place near my place but I didn’t know what the food was. That’s another fear! What am I eating?? I don’t usually ask, until last night. I was walking by, on my way to get my usual chicken and rice dish when two of my students and their parents asked me to join them. So I did. I sat down, ate delicious food outside, with people watching, taking pictures and talking about me. (I know the Chinese word for foreign teacher ).
My usual chicken dish that I love!!
What did I eat? Grilled tofu (I love tofu!!), a seafood skewer (no one could tell me what kind of seafood it was but it was good!), pork skins (yummy!), chicken (what part of the chicken is unknown but it was really good), chicken wings and a huge bottle of beer. I overcame the fear of the unknown food and enjoyed a lovely evening with these very generous people. And now I know I will definitely sit down again and enjoy the food there.
So when you’re traveling, take the plunge and try local food. Don’t be afraid. You may be pleasantly surprised!! (I did say no to chicken gizzards though ~ I had to draw the line somewhere!)