Theodore E. Keats, MD
"I should like to go where the golden apples grow."
--Robert Louis Stevenson
One of the great rewards of the academic existence is the
opportunity to travel. Lectureships, visiting professorships,
consultations, participation in national organizations, and
meetings all afford occasions to visit new cities, states, and
countries. I consider every trip an exciting adventure and an
exploration of the world and its people. I love to delve into other
cultures and try different languages. The quest is endless. I share
the enthusiasm of Robert Louis Stevenson who said, "For my part, I
travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel's sake.
The great affair is to move." New places are important and such
visits are lifetime landmarks.
I have found that this state of mind is not universal. There are
many for whom travel is an anathema to be avoided at all costs. For
these people, staying at home in familiar surroundings with family,
pets, garden, town, and friends represents the ultimate pleasure.
There is still another group who straddle the two extremes.
Basically, they do not like to travel, but will endure its
unpleasantries to visit friends. These individuals are oriented to
people, not places.
The difficulty in all of this is the failure to recognize these
innate differences between us and to adjust our expectations
accordingly, since we may encounter these differences in our
family, friends, or colleagues and misinterpret their feelings
about travel as personal rejection. It may require some innovative
planning to reconcile these differences and still have an enjoyable
trip, particularly since most of us do not enjoy solo travel, and
sharing the experience is often a major reward.
As an insatiable traveler, I find it hard to decline an
invitation to go anywhere, much to my wife's chagrin. I am still
awaiting the call to address the Antarctic Radiologic Association.