One of the most interesting people I have met traveling was in St. Vincent. We visited St. Vincent for the day during our Caribbean cruise. I never thought I would end up meeting someone who really changed my outlook on travel and life during a visit to the beach.
While we were sitting on the beach a local gentleman was near us carving fruit. I was fascinated and watched him carve intricate designs into these fruit shells.
We started talking about what he was doing and the art work he was adding to the shells. We ended up talking for a couple of hours. During our conversation I learned that he uses the money from carving the shells to save for his dream trip to the United States. He explained that he had heard how amazing the US is and how each state is so different. He had never been off of St. Vincent and wanted his first trip to be to the US. During our conversation he mentioned having health problems and using his time on the beach to heal and dream of his travels.
I was reminded during our conversation that not everyone travels and gets the opportunity to see the world. It was one of the moments in time when I realized that we are so blessed to have been able to travel the world and experience different cultures. We were in the middle of a two week cruise of the Caribbean and had not honestly thought much about the trip other than being excited to soak up the sun.
My conversation with this gentleman really changed my outlook on travel and making sure that I am always appreciative of everything we have been able to do. He worked for hours to carve a bowl for me. When I went to give him money he told me that he had enjoyed our conversation so much he could not take my money. I was in awe that this gentleman who had just told me his life dream was to travel turned down my money and thanked me for taking the time to talk with him. He said he spends most days at the beach carving and people rarely talk to him and seem afraid of him.
He was truly one of the nicest people I have spoken with in a long time. Isn’t it amazing how a simple conversation can change your outlook on life in a moment? I truly had my breath taken away by this man’s passion to visit the US. What a blessing to be able to experience life through the eyes of others as we get to travel this great land. I have the bowl on my desk as a reminder to never take life or travel for granted.