One of the greatest freedoms in life is to be able to cross borders, experience and live within different cultures and surround ourselves by a multitude of difference. It expands our senses, our sentiments and our capacity to appreciate diversity in an unbound manner.
One of my professional fears moving to Italy 8 years ago was that I would develop a mono-palate. Having worked with wine for all of my career, I was fortunate to have been based in London with access to the greatest range and diversity of wine imaginable. On moving to Tuscany, I was fearful that my palate would become so finely tuned to Sangiovese that I would end up evaluating all other wines on a skewed scale, or worse to lose the ability to judge them correctly. Travel has always helped keep this fear at bay however.
A certain insularity, focusing in on the short-range of vision due to the lack of exposure to difference over the past 18 months has manifested itself within many of us, perhaps subconsciously but it’s there. Just walking the streets in a different country allows you to tune in with the sentiment, to understand something you might not have done yesterday. It allows us to taste different flavours, feel different about ourselves in our surroundings.
It’s time to look out again, to notice difference and to embrace diversity that we can find both near and far. That is really worth celebrating.