Have you ever felt envious of people from other cities or countries? If so, you’re guilty of hometown jealousy. Travelers turned to the internet to share their thoughts on this common but often pushed-under-the-table topic.
1: Dreaming of Vienna
An American living abroad in Vienna fell in love with the daily sights to which native Austrians have quickly become accustomed. After four years back in the US, they still dream about returning. They say they’re envious of the people with family in Vienna who get to visit there every year.
2: Amazed with Arizona
A local from Mesa, Arizona, gushes about how lucky they are to live there. Daily outings include paddle boarding, mountain biking, and wildlife spotting. Even with the option to work remotely anywhere they choose, this proud Arizona native is staying put.
3: Finding Beauty in a Cornfield
A girl from the rural midwest thought her town was dull and boring until a group of foreign exchange students from Vietnam and Brazil came to visit. One day after school during the height of corn season, she came across one of the Vietnamese exchange students crying over how beautiful the corn fields were. Thanks to this shift in perspective, the girl fell back in love with her hometown and never left.
4: Trading the Sea for Skyscrapers
While in Jamaica, one traveler strolled along the beach talking with a local. He told the local man how lucky he was to see the ocean every day, while the local told him he wished he could have a view of large buildings instead.
5: Living the Dream in Seattle
After growing up in the Houston suburbs, one woman decided to take a leap of faith and move to Seattle simply because it looked interesting. A decade later, she’s still in awe of her beautiful adopted hometown and loves being the local the tourists wish they were.
6: Not-Always Beautiful Bali
One traveler admits that while Bali is a beautiful place to visit, it has its share of problems. While driving across the island, they noticed the smaller, poorer towns where locals live and work to put food on the table. It was a far cry from the tropical paradise seen on social media.
7: Golden Gate Traffic Jam
One San Francisco native points out how even the beautiful can become mundane, citing how a morning commute across the Golden Gate Bridge is less of a journey across an architectural marvel and more of a daily hassle.
8: Postcard Views, Pedestrian Life
One Swiss resident points out how the experience between traveling to a destination and living there can be vastly different. They note that while gazing at the Alps is still breathtaking, it only constitutes about 0.01% of their day; the rest is spent hurrying back and forth to work, running errands, and doing mundane activities.
9: Beauty in the Backyard
An Israeli native thought everywhere else seemed more beautiful than their own backyard until their mom purchased an annual pass to visit all of Israel’s national parks. Now, they visit a new national park every weekend and are in awe of all the gorgeous sites within driving distance of their house.
Wish vs Want
“I wish I lived in Kauai, but I’m not envious of the people who live there,” says one traveler, who recognizes that just because you wish for something doesn’t mean you should lose your peace over it. They explain, “Given the specialization of my job, it’s not really an option… and even if it were, it wouldn’t be a responsible option.”
It’s All About Perspective
Most commenters shared the same sentiment: The grass isn’t always greener on the other side. The trendy cities travelers visit for vacation, like Venice or London, often have a high cost of living, tons of tourists, and sometimes poor access to goods and services.
Rediscover Your Hometown
By playing tourist in their own hometown, travelers itching to live somewhere more exciting might discover, or rediscover, the fun, quirky, and delightful experiences their city has to offer. Try visiting a new restaurant, checking out a high-profile attraction, or searching out unique things to do.
When in Doubt, Book a Trip
If absence makes the heart grow fonder, then book a vacation. Sometimes, stepping outside of the day-to-day can cause a much-needed perspective shift. Often, the challenge isn’t finding a more exciting place to live but not falling into a routine that makes the marvelous seem mundane.
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