It’s spring, we are closed at our homes and bound only by the limits of our imagination. Let’s travel using alternative, and most importantly absolutely serious ways that will allow us to travel without leaving our living rooms.
Astral projection, or astral travel, is the way of traveling through the astral plane using the astral body. It’s basically a fictional way of traveling that allows an individual to separate one-third of his being (according to scholars in this field, each individual has three parts – the physical part, the mental part and the soul; here we separate the soul) and through it can move through the astral plane without moving his or her physical body. I’m sure you already see the benefit in that. The problem is that so far our most qualified study material available is the movie Doctor Strange, and Benedict isn’t replying to my messages…
Bad linguists might doubt the existence of astral travel. On the other hand, lucid dreaming is already more based on scientific facts. This is a phenomenon where the individual realizes that they are dreaming and can then adjust and control their dreams. In this case, we are limited in our journeys by our imagination, so it will probably be difficult to discover new countries if we have to invent them all first, but it’s still better than nothing. There are several ways to train lucid dreaming. The basis of one of them is to learn to remember (and write down) your dreams and often “control the reality”. Over time, a person learns to recognize what is and what is not a dream and can become aware of his / her dreams and thus begin to control them. Another method is the WILD method (Wake Initiated Lucid Dreaming), when we get into lucid dreaming while falling asleep.
Unlike astral projection, lucid dreaming is really possible to learn, there are many tutorials on the Internet and in libraries, and the whole experience doesn’t have to be limited to traveling. For example, we can read a book, play an electric trombone that sounds like kazoo, or eat as many cookies as we want and not gain a pound! The possibilities are endless! Personally, I have not learned any of the methods of lucid dreaming, as I have problems with sleep paralysis and I certainly do not intend to artificially increase their frequency, which could be a side effect in lucid dreaming. But I believe we can do anything if we are really excited about it! What a nice motivational ending this has.
The green screen used to be a filmmaker’s prerogative, but as technology develops, anyone can get it now, so it’s often used by youtubers. The advantage is that on a green screen (more or less on any well-lit green background) you can perfectly crop a figure from a video or photo and then digitally place it on another background. Filmmakers use it often so they don’t have to go anywhere; they simply build a green set and digitally edit the desired location and special effects there. Which is exactly what we need! Of course, in different quality, this effect can be achieved even without the green screen (but you will always need a camera). I’m sure we’ve all noticed, during our online lessons, a teacher sitting on a beach by the sea, freezing on the tops of the Alps, or anywhere else, where one of the basic backgrounds on Google Meets let him go.
The quality of the cut is not very good, so if someone would like to fake travel into an Instagram post, this method cannot do without the green screen. And if an online order green screen gets stuck in Suez, there’s nothing easier than stitching together a few green T-shirts.
VPN or “Virtual Private Network” is a secure encrypted connection between two networks, or between a specific user and a network. Most of us have certainly noticed it in ads on YouTube, where it is presented as the greatest necessity for our existence, like all other sponsored products. But what’s most important for us as virtual travelers is that it allows you to set up the country from which we connect. So our IP address does not have to be only from the Czech Republic, but may be from all over the world! This is mostly used as encryption or a way to access region locked items (online services or products available only for a country/region), such as movies on Netflix. But at the same time we can use it as our ticket anywhere! Do you want to be in France? No problem! Do you want to cool off in the Norwegian mountains? You’re already there! Do you really need to be in Yemen and take a photo on Instagram? Let’s do it!
Google Maps (or any other GPS maps, I don’t discriminate)
When you say “travel assistant”, the first thing that comes to mind is a map. It is an inseparable companion of every adventurer, because even if we go into the unknown, we will want to know where. When the original military GPS technology became publicly available, the maps for the phone completely overwhelmed the paper ones. It’s easier to know where I’m going when I know where I am. And most importantly, this map can’t be read upside down! For us right now, the most important privilege of Google Maps is Google Street View, which allows you to drag such a cute little yellow figure to ANY place in the world (which is mapped …) and look at the world through his eyes. It’s much easier than just looking for photos of the place we’re interested in, and it’s also a lot more authentic, because often the mapping car captures some people (or animals) in a situation that subsequently becomes viral.
Of course, whatever you choose to do, travel cannot fully replace it. But for example, for those who see mainly cultural enrichment in travel, many galleries and museums offer online
tours (including the National Museum in Prague or the Techmania Science Center in Pilsen). This format can then be an advantage, because we avoid crowds, queues and sometimes unavoidable school trips. Also, many clubs, bands and festivals broadcast concerts online, so we can dance without the additional costs associated with it and the fear of public embarrassment. Of course, even from my own experience, there’s a big difference between hearing the music as a studio record and a live version, on the other hand, a lot of musicians do living-room concerts and make a lot of behind-the-scenes videos, so we have a unique opportunity to get to know our favorite artists closer! And what about travel, there’s nothing to stop us from planning everything! Due to the economic situation, we can assume that prices will fluctuate a lot, and if we are smart, we will certainly find a way to pay less for the experience than we would pay in a situation without covid.
While I am a skeptic, I would recommend everyone to be optimistic about the travel situation. As a good friend of mine once said, “I always see a glass half full,” and then he knocked it off the bar.