Travel: The Unexpected Road

Travel takes you down unexpected roads, such as Elfreth's Alley in Philadelphia.
Travel takes you down unexpected roads, such as Elfreth’s Alley in Philadelphia.

I’m sitting on a bench in the shadow of Philadelphia’s Independence Hall. The square is filled with people — mothers pushing strollers, two students with their backpacks and a family of visitors who have come to see this historic American site.

Being a travel writer has its benefits, and I’m here to research Philadelphia, Pennsylvania as a destination. I’ve spent the last four days traipsing across the town’s brick streets, taking notes, collecting materials and snapping photos with my camera. But now my work is done. Though I had planned on a quiet morning in a café with my book and coffee, my feet have led me back to this square and the humble brick building in its center.

I’ve never been an astute student of American history, but for some reason, I’m intrigued with this location. For it was here that the very idea of America was born, when 56 men took a deep breath and bravely signed their Declaration of Independence from England back in 1776. It was a gutsy move, fraught with peril. And here, in this tiny corner of the world, I can still feel the faint pulse of America’s past.

You never know what you’re going to encounter when you travel — what will touch you, annoy you or even teach you something about yourself. I didn’t expect to feel anything special while researching Philadelphia, but I do — admiration for those who follow their dreams, even if it comes with a cost.

I’m not the only one who is affected by my travel experiences. In this month’s issue of Go World Travel, Susan Van Allen shares her story of getting lost in Genoa, and Janice Arenofsky explains the contentment she finds in traveling alone.

David Rich, a former trial lawyer who has lived in more than 90 countries, writes of trekking to the world’s “coolest” (literally!) volcano in Tanzania, and Susan Miles learns about Japanese cooking from Mrs. Osawa’s kitchen in Kyoto

We hope that you enjoy this issue of Go World Travel — and that wherever you travel, your experiences will be something to remember.

Happy Travels!

Janna Graber, Managing Editor


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