chapter  15
12 Pages

Travel and Imagination: An Invitation

ByGarth Lean, Emma Waterton

I awoke on my ¿rst morning home from southeast Asia to the sounds of ABC talkback radio. I was tired, my eyes refused to open and the strong Australian accent perplexed me. How were we picking up ABC radio in Laos? After a few seconds of utter confusion, reality sunk in – I was home. My mind, however, was not. It found itself tainted by the routine of travel; a self that had become accustomed to performing, socializing, thinking, being and imagining in very different physical, social and cultural contexts. The simple shift of physical location, and the return to a space of ‘familiarity’, was not enough to inspire a return to a particular way of thinking. This thinking had been forever altered. In saying this, however, one’s thinking undergoes continual alteration before, during and after any given physical travel experience, and while my imaginings upon my return had become entwined in my physical travel experience, they had always been inÀuenced by both physical travel and travel/mobilities more broadly.