The holiday season was much welcomed this year amidst so much turmoil. It almost felt surreal joining a fleet of travelers to distant places to take a vacation. However, real vacation requires to disconnect from the global. BBC World travels always with you and so does CNN or other international news channels. Even trying the local news in Scandinavia, I was reminded of the 5th anniversary of the horrible events on the 22nd of July in Norway, where 5 years ago Anders Breivik showed that extremism is not limited to Islamist radicals capitalizing on discontent of young Middle-Eastern men.
It just struck me how many youth and adults in the three holiday resorts that I visited during our Scandinavia tour are glued to their smart-phones, basically continuing gaming, watching series and having their usual 'social' talk as if they were still at home. The only way to really feel 'away' would be to disconnect from any media. Not to be taken to Rio, but to stay at home really. In searching for 'things to do' it is much more fun to visit a local Tourist Information office. I guess even your home town could become more interesting doing so. Switching identities is the trick I guess. Not carrying your whole digital identity with you while searching for things to do may offer a refreshing list of events, concerts and the like.
Admittedly, being online even right now to type this blog gets me in touch with my work again somehow, though still one more week of vacation to go. The nature of my work even did not allow me to fully disconnect this week, having to prepare for a training in Kenya. And even during holidays considerations in terms of CO2 emissions are to be part of decision-making. A car-tour through Scandinavia may not have been the best option...
Today I heard a sermon in church connecting work with enjoying the good life, much applying to this holiday season: For everything there is a time...
My name is Reinier van Hoffen.
Click here for a summary.
Also find the text of a lecture Dr. Achterhuis held at the 2012 Bilderberg conference.