The optimism of the traveler

This morning, I drove from Boston to Cape Cod, alone with my thoughts except for Theo sleeping in the back seat.  Once we were out of the city and smoothly on the highway, I got to thinking about work, and things really started clicking.  I found myself reaching for my iPhone to record voice memos about once every minute.  I may have even cracked an important nut; we’ll see.

I can’t remember where, but I once heard the phrase the optimism of the traveler, and the idea has really stuck with me.  For me, this manifests itself in the fit of ideastorming I usually find myself in whenever I’m on a plane or train (and sometimes when I’m in a car).  Some of my most creative and productive times have been in these situations.  And it’s not just about volume of ideas — there’s a different sort of excitement and hopefulness that happens during these times.

So, what is it about traveling that produces such excitement?

Is it being away from the internet, and therefore being forced to digest some ideas and not just consume at will?  Or maybe it’s less about attention, and more about being in that middle place between destinations, where anything is possible? Whatever it is, it’s really great.  Of course, the hard part is putting those ideas into motion once you’re feet are back on the ground…

// Photo by Tjeerd on Flickr

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