Our journeys shape us—and they also have the power to shape the experiences and opinions of others.

January 20, 2017

As the world wonders what a new era of U.S. foreign policy might bring, travel company Expedia has released an ad to remind us that the work of changing the world happens one person at a time, one place at a time.

The ad kicks off on the Trans-Siberian Railway, as an elderly man and younger woman share a train compartment through the striking landscape.

“We have this need, you and I, from the time we were little, to peek over our neighbor's fence,” the man tells the woman as the video tracks her youthful travel adventures. “And once we do, we see there's wonder waiting on the other side. Every step you take brings the world one step closer. You'll narrow the influence of narrow minds. You'll bridge continents, puncture prejudice, and keep the peace.”

The ad flashes to scenes of romance in narrow foreign streets, tension at a military checkpoint, and grief while assisting refugees off of rafts—all moments that resonate in our current political landscape.

“You may not always know it at the time, but one day, you will look back and see that you've made this world a better place,” he narrates. In the end, she pays the wisdom forward to a new young traveler. It's a reminder to all who choose to venture beyond home: Our journeys shape us—and they also have the power to shape the experiences and opinions of others.

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