My husband and I loved seeing places and eating exotic food. So, when our kids were small, we would go around the city on adventures in my father-in-law’s jeep every weekend. We would point out carabaos along the way, buy street food and park under a tree and eat off the hood of the jeep.
As they grew up, we would save up and make it a point to go out of the city once a year, even when life was difficult. We did not have Piso-fares then, so we took long bus rides, train rides and boat rides because plane rides were expensive. We went around the country and after seeing the Philippines, we went abroad.
Because we could not afford hotels, packaged tours, restaurant food and shopping, our trips took us to backpacker inns.
Our children learned to make itineraries by reading the Lonely Planet, even before there was Google.
They made budgets where our expenses were accounted for to the last centavo.
We went to museums on days when they were free.
They learned to haggle in the night markets. They learned to eat Maggi noodles for breakfast and street food from hawker stores for lunch and dinner.
The shopping each one had was limited. Our motto was: “Look, don’t buy.” They had to eat less to have money to buy pasalubong for their friends.
From the museums, the backpackers inns, the street food, they learned about histories, cultures and diversity first hand.
From exposure to these cultures, their self-concept increased as they started to appreciate their own.
From making budgets, planning itineraries, taking local transport, buying from local markets, they learned about marketing, packaging, finance and accounting, management and leadership.
Working with each other on these travel projects, they also developed a strong bond among themselves as siblings.
Someday, when my husband and I are no longer around, it will be the memories they had while working together in trips, that will sustain our businesses for our employees and their families in the years to come.
Do you travel with your family? When was the last time you went out-of-town with them?
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