Saturday, June 19, 2010


The notion of trust comes up a lot when I travel. Finding the fine balance between trust and cautious scepticism is very difficult.

Trusting the driver that he really put your bag in the trunk; trusting the stranger that the bushy and muddy path really IS a shortcut; trusting the store clerk that that really is the right price; trusting the taxi driver that the main road is closed and we need to take dark side streets; trusting the driver who is fastly turning sharp corners on the edge of a cliff; trusting the deaf woman who is asking for money; trusting the group of students who are taking you to a restaurant; trusting the old man trying to help you; trusting the old man who is rubbing his stomach and saying he is hungry; trusting that the bathroom really is down the dark alley; trusting the new people around you; trusting in their good nature.

It’s a very fine balance, and one that I still have troubles with. In China, after being scammed a few times, I was very sceptical and distrusting. But after a lot of good experiences both there and here in Peru, I’ve realized that sometimes you just have to blindly trust. You WILL get burned, but that’s life. You have to be smart and truly trust and listen to your instincts, you have to be sceptical and VERY aware...but never lose trust in people.