Confessions of a Jetsetter™

Confessions of a Jetsetter w/ Matthew Rodriguez

“Here’s a thought experiment: Imagine someone putting a plate of food in front of you. You don’t recognize what it is. You swear you’ve never seen anything like it before in your life. You take a bite with slight trepidation. A tingling occurs. Your pupils dilate. It’s delicious. You register a shock: You’ve eaten this before at one point in your life. You don’t remember when you ate it, but with equal certainty that you expressed about not having ever seen anything like this prior to the first bite, you now are unequivocally certain you’ve had this before. The taste triggers vague, nebulous recollections of your childhood from the quiet corners of your mind and then just as quickly they disappear. No other documentation exists that validate those memories other than your own conviction of your thoughts. This plate of unfamiliar food is suddenly the only thing that tells you, “Yes, those memories exist.”

 This occurred to me on one of my most memorable trips and experiences when I returned to a place that was home when I left and when I returned 14 years later it was alien and foreign…

Matt Rodriguez-Confessions of a Jetsetter

I left Korea as a 7-year-old orphan and lucked into winning one of those lotteries of life. For me that lottery was being adopted by an American family – a family that also greatly placed a high value on the importance of exposure to other cultures and lands. As a result I traveled broadly before I returned to my roots in Korea. I thought I was returning home from a diasporic sense, but instead my former home was unfamiliar and exotic. I didn’t understand the language or culture. And then we began eating. And I began remembering. Nearly every meal became a time machine that allowed me to explore and re-capture my youth. For this I’m grateful for that particular trip which allowed me to bridge my past with my present.”

Matthew Rodriguez-Confessions of a Jetsetter

Matthew Rodriguez // @matthew_rodriguez


058/100 of #100DaysofConfessions Instagram Project