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对话时报2019年“52个地方”旅行者

更新时间:2019/3/19 21:25:03 来源:纽约时报中文网 作者:佚名

Meet the 52 Places Traveler for 2019
对话时报2019年“52个地方”旅行者

Last year, for the first time, we sent one intrepid traveler, Jada Yuan, to all 52 destinations on our Places to Go list. This year, we decided to do it again. Once again, we got applicants from around the world and from a variety of backgrounds (meet some of them here). After weeks of assessing them, we settled on a handful of finalists. From that group, we chose Sebastian Modak, one of our finalists from last year, and a journalist with an impressive background and résumé. Just weeks before he sets off to his first destination — Puerto Rico, which took the No. 1 spot on the list this year — we asked him some questions about himself and the trip ahead.

去年,我们有史以来第一次将一名勇敢无畏的旅行者——杰达·袁(Jada Yuan)送到了所有52个“最值得去的地方”。今年,我们决定再一次这么做。再一次,我们收到了来自世界各地的申请,这些申请者们背景各异(可以到这里认识其中一些人)。经过对他们数周的评估,我们选出了几名入围者。从这批申请者中,我们选择了塞巴斯蒂安·莫达克(Sebastian Modak),他是去年也曾入围,是一名记者,背景、履历都十分出色。就在他出发前往第一个目的地——波多黎各,也是今年名单上的第一名——几周前,我们问了一些关于他自己和即将到来旅行的问题。

So, how does it feel to be the 52 Places Traveler for 2019?

那么,成为2019年52个地方旅行者是什么感受?

In a word: surreal. It’s a lot of emotions at once — gratitude, excitement, anxiety — but mostly I’m still finding it hard to wrap my head around it concretely. I’m starting to think the sheer scope of what I’m doing won’t hit me until I make landfall in the first destination and start reporting. Luckily, data scientists at the travel aggregator Kayak have helped us sketch out an itinerary for the year in advance — as they did last year for Jada — so I have some sense of what the structure of my year looks like. That said, this trip wouldn’t be nearly as interesting if I knew exactly what to expect, right? I’m ready to embrace all the uncertainty that comes with an opportunity like this and see where it takes me.

总而言之,很不真实。是种百感交集的感觉——感激、兴奋、焦虑——但最主要的,我还是很难具体地去理解这件事。我开始觉得,直到我降落在第一个目的地,开始进行报道的时候,我才能理解我正在做的事情有多么庞大。幸运的是,旅游聚合服务客涯(Kayak)已经帮我们提前制定出了一整年的行程安排——他们去年也是这么为杰达做的——所以我能大概知道我这一年的时间分配是什么样的。即便如此,如果我清清楚楚地知道旅程中会发生什么的话,这趟旅行就不怎么有趣了,不是吗?我准备好了迎接随这种机会而来的一切不确定性,顺其自然。

Have you been following Jada Yuan, our 2018 Traveler? Anything in particular you’ve picked up from her dispatches?

你有在关注我们2018年的旅行者杰达·袁吗?从她发回的通讯报道中,你有特别注意到什么吗?

I’ve read every one. It’s been a real pleasure following along and I know I’ve got some big, well-worn shoes to fill. My favorite moments from Jada’s dispatches were the interactions that, on the surface, may seem everyday, but in actuality tell much bigger stories about a place: a night out in Kigali, a meal in La Paz, a haphazardly assembled trip-planning committee in China built out of nothing but the kindness of strangers. Those stories get at the heart of why we travel. I’m hoping to bring the same openness and down-for-anything attitude that led Jada to those moments.

每一篇我都读过。一直关注她的旅程是一件乐事,我也知道我要花很大力气才能像她做得一样好。对于杰达的那些报道,我最喜欢的是她和当地人互动的瞬间。表面上来看,这些互动很日常,但实际上却能让人更多地理解一个地方:在基加利的夜生活;拉巴斯的一餐饭;在中国一个随意组建起来的行程规划委员会,这个委员会之所以能建立起来,都是靠陌生人的善意。这些故事表达的正是我们为什么去旅行的原因。我希望能给读者带来同样的开放、愿意尝试任何事物的态度,正是这种态度让杰达得以有那些遭遇。

In a couple of ways, you have a background uniquely suited to this gig.

从某些方面看,你的背景对这份工作来说非常合适。

I do feel like I’ve been working toward doing something like this my whole life. I was born in the United States to a Colombian mother and an Indian father, but we left for Hong Kong when I was 2 years old and continued to move every few years. My brothers and I didn’t really grow up with the concept of “home,” because we understood every place was temporary. It made travel the only real constant in our lives. January marks five years in New York City, though, and that puts it in a joint first-place spot for the longest I’ve stayed anywhere — tied with Indonesia and India.

我确实觉得自己一直都在向这个方向努力。我生于美国,母亲是哥伦比亚裔,父亲是印度裔,但我们在我两岁的时候举家搬往香港,之后每过几年都会搬一个地方。我们兄弟几个在成长过程中并没有“家”的概念,因为我们明白,每个地方都是临时的。这让在路上成了我们生活中唯一真正有连续性的事情。不过,到今年一月,我在纽约就已经待了五年了,因此它将并列成为我待过最久的地方——和它齐平的是印度尼西亚和印度。

For me, travel is all about immersing yourself in the unfamiliar, and embracing the feeling of humility that comes with that: There’s always something to learn from someone else, from somewhere else. That’s what made me choose a career in multimedia storytelling. I was a Fulbright-mtvU fellow in Botswana, where I spent a year documenting the local hip-hop scene. I was a producer on an MTV series that looked at the role of the arts in protest movements around the world. Most recently, I was an editor and then a staff writer at Condé Nast Traveler, where I was often sent on assignment to find and report stories that resonate with a global and globally curious audience. I think the thread that connects all of these experiences is an insatiable sense of wonder at the world around me.

对我而言,旅行关乎于将自己沉浸在不熟悉的事物中,并且完全接纳随之而来的谦卑感。别人、别的地方,总是有你能学到的东西。这也是为什么我会选择一个用多媒体讲述故事的职业。我曾是富布莱特mtvU学者,在博茨瓦纳花了一年纪录当地的嘻哈音乐风貌。我曾是一个MTV系列片的制片人,关注世界各地艺术在抗议运动中发挥的作用。最近期的是在《康泰纳仕旅行者》(Condé Nast Traveler)担任编辑,而后是专职撰稿人,在那里,我常常被派出找寻、报道能在全球和对全球感兴趣的受众那里产生共鸣的故事。我认为,将这些经历都串联起来的线索,是对我周遭世界怀着永不满足的惊异感。

You’ll be starting your journey in Puerto Rico, which took the No. 1 spot on the list. Have you been?

你即将开始在波多黎各的旅程,那里是今年名单上的第一位。你去过那里吗?

I haven’t been, but I’ve wanted to — in part thanks to some of the island’s cultural exports that show up in New York, where I live: heaping portions of arroz con gandules and the sounds of hip-hop duo Calle 13, for example. I can’t think of a better time to finally make the trip. Working in travel journalism, I’ve seen and reported on how natural disasters can devastate economies, not just in their immediate aftermaths, but for months or years.

我还没有去过,但我一直都很向往那里——部分原因是这个岛一部分的文化出口会出现在我居住的纽约:比如那些堆得高高的arroz con gandules(鹰嘴豆猪肉米饭)和嘻哈乐二人组Calle 13的音乐。终于能成行去那里,我想不到比现在更好的时候了。在旅游方面做报道的我见到过,也报道过自然灾害是如何摧毁经济的,而这种损害不仅是在灾害立刻发生后,而是会持续数月或是数年。

As has been the case in the wake of Hurricane Maria, tourism is often one of the hardest hit sectors. But I’ve heard about how resilient the people of Puerto Rico have been in the face of not only hurricanes, but economic and political crises as well. I can’t wait to try the island’s coffee at its source and follow the sound of rolling bomba drums to a countryside dance party. But, most of all, I’m looking forward to meeting the people whose perseverance has made Puerto Rico the No. 1 slot this year, just a year and a half after tragedy.

飓风玛利亚(Hurricane Maria)发生后也是同样,旅游业通常是遭受打击最为严重的一个领域。但我听到过波多黎各人不仅在飓风面前,还有在经济和政治危机面前都能够迅速恢复元气。我等不及去波多黎各岛上的原产地尝尝他们的咖啡,追随轰隆作响的邦巴鼓声前往一个乡间跳舞派对。但最重要的,我很期待认识当地人,正是他们的存在让波多黎各在悲剧发生仅仅一年半后,就成为了今年的第一名。

Is there a destination on the list you are most looking forward to?

名单上有哪个目的地是你最期待前往的?

There’s nothing I’m not excited about, but I think Iran takes the top spot. More than any other place on the list, or even in the world, Iran is somewhere that I’ve only ever been able to look at from afar, through the lens of scary newspaper headlines. I’ve found that there’s often a huge gap between the everyday lived experience of people on the ground and the country as we understand it through geopolitics. I’m ready for any preconceptions I have to be totally shattered, and I’m excited to share my experience with New York Times readers.

我对一切都感到很兴奋,但我认为伊朗是其中让我最期待的,程度比名单上其他地方、甚至是世界上其他地方都更高。伊朗是一个我迄今为止只能在远处,透过可怕的报纸标题观望的地方。我发现,在实际生活中人们每天过的日子和我们通过地缘政治理解的国家存在着巨大差异。我已经做好了自己所有的任何偏见都会被完全打破的准备,而且我也很开心能将自己的经历与《纽约时报》的读者一同分享。

What do you think will be the biggest challenges for this job?

你认为这份工作中最大的挑战会是什么?

I know the hardest part of this trip is going to be the abrupt end to any stability or normalcy I’ve created over the past few years. To say “see you in a year” to my (unconscionably supportive) partner, my friends and the routines I’ve developed here in New York is going to hurt. I also know I have to recognize the immense privilege I’ve been given and channel that sense of unmooring and the inevitable loneliness that will set in from time to time into motivation to keep going, keep learning, and keep telling stories. If past travels are anything to go by, you often find on-the-go support networks in the most unlikely of places.

我知道这趟旅程中,最难的地方会是我过去几年创造出的任何稳定性或常态的突然终结。对(完全支持)我的伴侣、朋友还有我在纽约建立起的日常生活说再见,是会让人难受的。我也知道,我必须认识到自己获得的这种巨大特权,将那种时不时会有的不安感和无可避免的孤独感化为动力,继续前行,继续学习,并且继续为人们讲述故事。如果说过往的旅行有任何能得出的经验的话,那就是你往往会在最让人意想不到的地方找到活跃的支持网络。

How are you preparing for the trip, practically and emotionally?

你都对这趟旅行做了哪些准备,无论是实际生活中的还是心态上的准备?

I’ve found myself zeroing in on really small, likely inconsequential things. Do I finally give up on my sentimentality around physical books and buy a Kindle? (Probably.) Will I even have time to read books? (Probably not.) I get that a versatile pair of shoes is going to be important and I should probably start researching that, but “how many pairs of socks do I bring?” I think it’s in part a way for me to avoid the larger existential questions, but I also think it’s a good approach. I’m starting small and then gradually working my way up, because I know “where am I?” is going to be the question I end up asking the most.

我发现自己渐渐地开始关注那些非常小、很可能不重要的事情。我是不是要终于放弃自己对实体书的感情,去买个Kindle?(很可能。)我首先会不会有时间看书呢?(可能不会有。)我知道一双多功能鞋会很重要,我可能得开始研究研究,但“我该带多少双袜子呢?”我觉得这有一部分是我避免面对更大的生存问题的方式,但我也觉得这是个好方法。我从小事入手,然后慢慢开始思考大问题,因为我知道“我在哪?”会是我问得最多的一个问题。

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