I am not one that quits my job to travel full time (though I have been known to do that on occasion). Every time that I do that, though, I get rejuvenated and excited about developing ideas. I find new strengths within myself, focus my adventures towards growth, and begin new efforts within my career. I come back, contribute to my community, help others, and work to fulfill a purpose in my life. I put the dreams I had on a mountain summit into action and find new forms of exploration. My life can’t just be about roaming, though… I have to be doing something, working towards a goal, trying to find answers, or looking for an understanding. I have to put my travels to work, pushing myself to learn, ponder, and be a better person in my already existing life. I hope to be a positive contribution to society, and travel is the tool that helps support me in this goal. I then bring what I find back to my loved ones and community and try to make something positive happen.
I want to take my time. I want to be true to myself. I want to talk to people.
Why I value travel:
- To clear my head.
When people step away from their daily life, one can find a more calm, clear mindset. That reset in demeanor can help me participate in my life with more reflection, honesty, and kindness.
- To engage with nature.
When I spend time in nature, of any form, I find peace. I remember that I am one tiny part of this universe, and I find that feeling comforting. It’s why I like the song Dust in the Wind. I take a breath of clean air, watch a sunset, and reconnect with my soul. One of my favorite quotes is, “Quiet the mind and the soul will speak.” To me, nature has the same purpose as meditation or prayer.
- To explore, connect, and discover.
I want to get out into the world and discover the accomplishments of humanity, for all of its beautiful diversity. I want to listen to historical stories and search through a society’s roots. I want to discern how a culture developed and connect the dots to understanding the present. I want to indulge in the uniqueness. I want to feel what it is like to walk down different streets, to hear the cadence of the language, to taste the flavor floating in the air. I want to learn something new.
- To bring back ideas and a broader understanding.
I want to come back to my community refreshed and motivated, ready to do some good work.
And every time I travel, I tend to follow that same order of events…
My career choices and successes have allowed for my gypsy ways to come to fruition. I am a writer, an educator, and a teaching artist. I have been known to occasionally travel with national tours. Sometimes I get placed in cities for several weeks at a time, leading me to roam and meander about, processing the culture around me slowly. This allows me to soak in the vibes of a city or area, immersing myself in all that I can discover. Home is Denver, a playground within itself, and my musings can take place from a mountain top just thirty minutes away (or, let’s be honest, from my backyard garden or hot tub with a glass of wine in my hand).
I also consider the current events of the day and how the leading stories connect to humanity around me, in my current city or state. My travels have led to interesting encounters with differing opinions. On many occasions, history will follow me, as it absolutely did throughout 2017 on our last tour. I feel as though my reflections wouldn’t be honest if I didn’t acknowledge the presence or effects of these happenings as I encounter them within my travels. It colors the experience, affects my response to an area, and I learn something new every time.
Hence the name of the site, Happily Meandering. I meander about, looking for inspiration and contemplation, finding interesting historical stories and indulging in the joy that can be found in world. I will also use too much alliteration when writing about my musings, maps, and Maggie Dog adventures.