Flying around the world, defying the pull of jet lag, sometimes travellers may feel like the mortal version of superman. It is true both superman and the traveller have come from far away: both must adjust to new situations, meeting new people, and learning new things. Despite the similarities, however, there are actually many differences between the world’s hero and the world’s adventurer. Here, we put superman and the avid traveller against each other to find out their differences and similarities.
Perhaps the biggest similarity between superman and the traveller is the ability to switch to an alter ego. Like Clarke Kent becoming superman, the traveller changes from mild mannered office worker to global adventurer — swapping the office cubicle for the plains of the Serengeti or the ruins of Machu Picchu.
Both superman and the global adventurer have the power of flight. Of course, superman depends on the superhuman ability of altering his gravity field, whereas the global nomad relies on a plane. While superman can hurtle through the air unaided, travellers must wrap themselves up into the economy section of an aircraft. While it may not be as glamorous, at least there is some in flight entertainment! Like superman, the traveller can quickly move from place to place, just not quite as quickly.
Another of superman’s abilities is that of superhuman endurance. Superman’s stamina is relentless, able to do far more than the average human without getting tired. This is also true of the global traveller: s/he can stay up all night drinking and chatting in a downtown bar, only to wake up at the crack of dawn to tour the city. When it comes to endurance, Superman and the global traveller are evenly matched.
Superman and the traveller are evenly matched when it comes to superhuman speed. This ability allows superman to race from place to place; all good travellers can do this too. Whether it is rushing through an airport to make the flight in the nick of time, or gulping down a free hostel breakfast, travellers also have superhuman speed, when needed.
Both superman and the traveller have been known to show superhuman strength. While superman can lift cars without breaking a sweat, the traveller can carry heavy bags up endless flights of stairs without complaining.
Superman is known to be a genius: he has a near perfect memory, and can speak many languages. While most travellers do learn a few words of the local language, they might need a bit of help in remembering every detail. Luckily, tools like Facebook, travel blogs or even the humble travel journal can help the traveller remember all their experiences and new friends!
One big difference between superman and the traveller is that superman can stay in the sun for hours without getting burnt. Unfortunately, most global nomads do not have this power. A few hours relaxing on the beaches in Thailand, and all of a sudden, travellers are burnt to a crisp, starting to looking more like lobsters.
Unfortunately, superman also outranks the traveller when it comes to healing. Superman can recover quickly from any injury or illness, which would be a great talent for any traveller! Unfortunately, when a traveller gets sick — perhaps food poisoning or a stomach bug — they must wait for it to pass.
Everyone knows, of course, that superman’s biggest weakness is kryptonite. The traveller, on the other hand, has no such weakness. Whatever the situation, the global traveller can think of a solution or way out.
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