Travel – Broaden the mind or just one-upmanship?

“There was a time when travellers met and talked about where they had been and where they were going. That was how you learnt what awaited you on  the road….

Now the conversations around camp fires and in backpackers and on trains are too often tiresome games of one-upmanship: : ‘You crossed the Karakoram by horse liberated from your Pashtun captors? Well let me tell you about the time I swam the Amazon. Naked….’

Meanwhile, the country outside sits and breathes and waits for you to see it….

I went and stood away from the group of travellers and listened to the night.

“Whatcha doin?” asked one.

“Trying to be here now,” I said.

“Yeah. He sighed.  ‘You know, when I was in the West Bank…..’ ”

Sunday Times

After all, what is the function of travel? Surely not to brag to your friends about where you’ve been and bore them with hundreds of pics. Clearly there’s nothing wrong with taking in all the new impressions with delight. But for me, the function of travel is to wake me up; all the senses are on high alert and I am in the Now. You must have experienced seeing your home as if anew when you’ve been away. That’s being present right here and now.

Living in the Now gives us the opportunity to experience life fully……It brings heightened awareness, contentment, inner harmony and deep peace, wherever we are. (Intro)

Remember to be kind and gentle with yourself always.

The full book can be downloaded as an e-book from Amazon on  or, Search by typing in: Living in the Now by Jill Jacques 


About Jill M Jacques

I grew up in Johannesburg, South Africa, and have spent most of my life here doing the usual things - marrying, having children and caring for an array of pets ranging from dogs to silkworms and chameleons. I first became interested in philosphy and its practical application in everyday life in my early 20s and spent many years as part of a group that pursued this goal. Drawing on this experience, I have been running "How to live in the Now" programmes for over 10 years. I wrote this book in response to requests from group members for something "simple and practical". I tend to see the funny side of life situations and enjoy writing humorous back pages as well as short stories and some poetry. Some of these have been published. Being here now is what really matters.
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