Globalisation is not just a buzz word. While it may be used most in reference to business and politics, globalisation is more than that. It is also personal. How else to describe lives where friends are scattered here, there and everywhere – across the country, the continent, and the globe – but are still in constant contact?
From mobile phones to Facebook, technological change has affected our ability to keep in contact while travelling. There were days when the “Wish you were here” postcard would arrive a week or two after you had already returned; now you can send real-time photos and snapshots home from your laptop or smartphone. The best friend of long-term travellers is Skype, and blogs play their part too.
It’s all a far cry from my first foreign holiday, when over a decade ago on the Turkish coast we were cut off from news, friends and family for a fortnight, save for the one phone-card call home made from a rusty telephone box at the side of the road. These digital developments nurture relationships outside travel too. I can call my friend in Wales, g-chat with another in India, and Skype across the pond.
The image above may be a Blackberry ad campaign, but for someone like me whose suitcase has been known to be packed and unpacked again in a matter of months, it really resonates.
For proof that closeness really does have nothing to do with distance, read my story, published February 2016: On Travel, Love, and A New Life in America.