Tuesday, November 14, 2006

New Feature – 'The Year of Living'

I've decided that my first Colorado winter will be spent as a Writing Monk. The Plan: Slave in the corporate mines, eat gruel, do yoga and write. Sure, I'll take time off for guitar lessons, travel and skiing but seriously, I gotta get my ass in gear. Otherwise, I'll still be writing press releases in the year 2026 and probably trying to hang myself with the USB cable that plugs straight into my spine.

Consequently, I am rummaging through the hundreds of half-written essays, notes scribbled in earnest and especially, volumes of journals. Remember those? Before the Blogosphere was born in a sudden white flash, there was the tangible romanticism of paper and pen. To my delight, I've recently unearthed several battered notebooks that accompanied me on a year-long adventure around the globe a decade ago.

When I was 29, I gave up my cool apartment, left my sweet boyfriend, quit all my jobs, sold my belongings and bought a round-the-world ticket. For some of 1995 and most of 1996, I explored Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Fiji and Hawaii as best I could. There is not a day that goes by I do not recall that magical time period of my life. What this experience taught me about the world, about people, about cultures – especially my own – is invaluable to me.

On a semi-regular basis, I'd like to share some entries from that period, get some of this stuff out into space. Here's the first, a short entry jotted down just after initial take-off:

LA to Minneapolis

The day has finally come and here I sit, hovering above my country in a DC-10, not really believing it. How could this possibly work … me, the world and everything? What if we don't get along?

Sharing a hot dog and a Budweiser with my mother in the airport ($12) was a poetic act. She's been so supportive, meanwhile enduring all kinds of disturbances in her own life. I will worry about her and her about me because that's how that sort of thing works.


Fang Bastardson said...

I remember when you came back to your senses – er, I mean, the USA – the first thing we did was go see “Showgirls” and you loved it, you were so starved for American culture. I still think of you as I’m fast-forwarding through that movie to the good bits.

Anonymous said...

*Please* can you write about how you were able to do this world-wide trip? For those of us who aspire to that depth and breadth of adventure and travel --- how does one financially and mentally even BEGIN to think about doing something similar? My friends and I can barely pay our rent, and my parents would kill me traveling 'alone' as a woman... but it's an ultimate dream. Congrats for doing it! Please share how one can do the same!

Aspiring SuperGirl World Traveler