In my mind, this blog serves many purposes. It is a rumination on outdoor adventures, place-based learning, photography, whole-foods living, travel preparation, and many other lessons that life has tossed my way over the past few months. As I move into the next chapter of my life, it too will enter into a new phase of its life. All of the foundational elements will remain, but the blog will focus more directly on my experiences as I travel both around the United States and the world. The places I see, the things I learn, the people I meet, the books I read, the trails I hike, and the thoughts I have will begin to be the voice of my experience and the content of this blog.
I have always loved to learn. My nomadic lifestyle is an opportunity to take advantage of the unbridled experiential learning possibilities that the open road has to offer. Hours of open road for books on tape, countless quiet coffee shops to curl up with a book, and hundreds of people who are hopefully willing to share their stories with me. My goal is to gain an understanding of people and place that is entirely absent from many textbooks or survey-level courses. Our world is so incredibly diverse and, as humans, we have an obligation to try to understand that diversity. As a teacher, I also understand the importance of sharing those experiences with others. Stories exist to be shared.
Part of my endeavor to chronicle my experiences is selfish. I want to hold myself accountable. Over the past year, I have written more than I wrote all of last year. Simply by putting pen to paper, I have learned so much about myself and how I view the world. This forum has encouraged me to fully realize some of the ideas that have been freely bouncing around in my head. That is invaluable to me and will continue to be. But it is not the only reason that I felt I should push myself to write. It is also for the world around me, especially for my family and friends. As they are the people who have led me to this crossroads, it is only fair that I share my experiences with them. From the support of my family to the hair-brained schemes of my friends, each moment has made me the person that I am today. Together, we formulated this plan and together we will follow through with it.
I have thought about whether or not I should create a page like this for quite some time. On the one hand, my adventures should be my own. I am embarking on it, and I should follow through with it, regardless of the struggles or trials that befall me. I should have to live with the consequences of my actions. On the other hand, I know there are people who love adventures like this, who will enjoy following my travels, and will want to support what I am trying to do. I strongly believe in supporting undertakings that could affect positive change in this world. I do not know whether or not my experiences will garner widespread change, but I guarantee that they warrant curiosity and consideration.
I am not expecting massive amounts of support, but I will wholeheartedly appreciate any that does come my way. Partly for financial boost, but also because it means that people care about what I am doing. Sometimes, that is all you need to put a smile on your face. Other times all you need is just a few extra cents for a nice, hot cup of coffee.