To appreciate – meaning to recognize the full worth of something and understanding all implications of a specific situation.
Whilst traveling through various parts of the world, I have come across different cultural beliefs, different people from different social classes and have experienced the lifestyle in each and every respective country. To be fair, I have not spent enough time in many countries to really get a feel for the respective culture. But certainly I have spent much time (several months) in a few of countries, including Argentina, Australia, Germany and the U.S. In most cases, I personally experienced that the longer you reside in a country/ cultural region, the more can you appreciate their set of values and beliefs. However, there are exceptions to these rules as well. What I have also noticed is that you can genuinely appreciate another culture simply by experiencing their culture for a few days.
What does “to appreciate” mean?
Do not fall into a misconception that to appreciate means to like a particular way of living or religion. It certainly does not. However, to appreciate means, as stated in the first sentence of this blog post, to recognize the full worth of something. This means to realize that each and every culture and religion does bring value to the world. More importantly, that a culture has an unbelievable high intrinsic value for the people, sharing these cultural values.
Appreciate means to see the world differently than the masses. It means to acknowledge the differences in culture and religion. It means to value the benefit these differences bring to the entire world population, including you as a traveler. Imagine how boring a world trip would be if every place you visit would look similar, people would behave similarly and food would be similar. Every difference in language, food, gestures has the sole outcome of enriching the world. Every new political opinion you hear enriches your way of thinking. Each new tradition you encounter gives you a new perspective and enlarges your horizon and your limited awareness. Don´t have a one-sided view.
Through our shared stories and experiences, we want our fellow travelers to appreciate differences more on their endeavors around the globe.
Whether it be Tango dancing in Buenos Aires or having a barbecue with kangaroo meat with your mates in Sydney or Port wine tasting in Porto – these experiences will shape the way you will experience life.
Value differences. Appreciate them.