I am constantly in awe of these famous places that people (myself included) travel to, just to be there! Just to see! because we’ve grown up hearing of them. These places have a type of hype or wonder built up around them. This is not to say that the Colosseum in Rome is not magnificent, that the scores of people and burkas, the shouting and the pushing did not overwhelm me at the Spice Bazaar in Istanbul and that the edge of ocean and earth in Astoria, Oregon, that flat shelf of water and the guttural vibration, the stereo of sea lions fighting for the highest spot on the rock jetties did not affect me. These places are famous because they possess some type of magic. And, after seeing a handful of beautiful and amazing places, a person can arrive and be hit with the knowing that they are still simply, who they are. That the site (the sight!) is, for all intents and purposes, just another place which your feet come to tread upon, and you do not become a new-and-improved or heightened version of yourself because of your arrival. A place rarely changes you. I believe that it is you who lets the place in. It is you who changes yourself. Nevertheless, this realization is always made louder, for me, by the value of time, my understanding and recognition that these places are ancient! They have been there and will continue to be just as they are, as they’ve been. But, on the wall, this Great Wall (it truly is a great wall), I came to understand something as powerful as the place itself. IOne must carry their own magic and let it carry you in that place. Be in constant conversation with it. I had the company of my best friend -my sister – and a silence that I’ve never heard before in my life. There is so much space on the wall that sound does not echo. I could only continue, step forward with gratitude, the human voice in my head clamoring, “THIS IS THE GREAT WALL OF CHINA! YOU ARE ON THE GREAT WALL OF CHINA!” And the spirit-self, that bigness inside saying, “Go higher. Don’t look back.” #thegreatwallofchina #travel #traveltheworld #journey http://ift.tt/2g1COTv

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