Life on the Open Road

Life on the Open Road
Showing posts with label Happiness. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Happiness. Show all posts

Saturday, July 8, 2017

Incredibly Independent

I’m feeling incredibly independent. I’m doing so many new things and living so much of how and what I want to with more clearly on the way, that it feels amazing. I am happier and happier and things are going really, really well.

It feels good to notice that I’m feeling so independent as feeling independent to me means feeling capable, confident, secure, solid, strong and able. It feels doubt free and it is. I hadn’t even realized until just now how doubt free I am about so many things. I really KNOW without question that I can. I can do whatever, I can be whatever, I can have whatever. I feel very free, very sure, very upbeat, and very good. This also means that I’m up for a lot of new things and open to a lot of what I want. I just figure it’s a “Yes, I can” and a “Yes, I will” and a “Yes” to so much good stuff. It’s like when I’m driving and keep getting green lights as I’m ready and eager to go, enjoying the ride, the destinations, and the continuing journey. It feels good. I feel good.

Here are a few pictures of late. First, of meals and second of nature.

It feels really good to have healthy relationships and especially to have a healthy relationship with myself. Inspiration comes from within (contrast to motivation which comes from the external i.e. “a motivating factor”) and feeling inspired to new ideas, action, and whatever else, is really fun. My impulses are good and I see the how things come together so well as I trust and follow them. So much of my journey has been with feeling that- feeling my way as I go. I continue to be lead by this and I’m excited about where I am at and excited about where else I will go and what else I will do. Content is awesome. Ready and eager for more, knowing it is coming, while being happy where I am is ideal. I’m in a really good place; a really good place emotionally, physically, and overall. Life is supposed to be fun and mine is. I’m really happy.

Amongst all of the choices that I’m making, all of the easy decisions that are becoming easier, I had a moment of realizing all of the choices I was no longer making. Better choices have taken their place and a better life has as well. There’s no turning back and lots of forward motion. This is living. This is learning. This is knowing and trusting myself with such certainty. It only gets better and better. I am really proud of myself and my life and all the goodness I have asked for and allowed. It only gets better and better. Life is good!

Saturday, May 13, 2017

A Favorite Place

I'm so thankful for this grey day. As I lay here, listening to the sounds of the wind through the trees and with a sense of how it feels to have it brush upon me, I'm once again appreciating the contrast. So many warm and sunny days abound here and I absolutely love it. I love the sunlight and the warmth and the ease at which I feel being in it. I have found a place that is so easy to feel good and be happy at. 

It's raining now and being in the RV when it rains is lovely. The sounds of it hitting various parts, the relief from the heat and humidity, plus the added bonus of a wash to remove the sand and make the exterior sparkly clean is all enjoyable. 

I posted the above picture today on IG with this:

"So where have you been and what have you been up to the past 5+ months?"

"Oh, here, there, traveling and exploring. Mostly, I've been at the beach. "

And it's true. I can be content anywhere and I can especially be content at the beach. Even someone who loves traveling and new and different places and experiences can have favorites and this is one of mine. In fact, I've hardly been in woods in comparison as the beach is just so enticing. It has been and continues to be. 

Depending on where along the coast I am (traveling mostly along the Central to Northern coast of Florida these months), there have been noticeable variances. I've shared about this throughout my posts and I continue to like the similarities and differences I find. The textures, the objects and creatures, and what have you. The beach is a lovely match to me when I'm already happy and feeling good and a place I go to realign with happiness and feeling good if I'm out of sync with that. It's truly one of my favorite places. 

I want to open this post to comments because I would love to hear from people where their favorite place to be is. Where are you happy to return to and happy to be? What is your favorite place? 

There are some thoughts and things we can think of that immediately evoke good feelings. Beach
walking, for me, is top notch. I love it. 

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Satisfaction and Appreciation

I woke up this morning and wrote in a notebook about a number of things that were working out for me. I touched on satisfaction when I wrote about Beach Love, how it’s great to fall asleep satisfied and wake eager for more, and I’ve really been feeling satisfaction in noticeable ways more and more for a while now. I’m talking about the feeling of it, not just an action like crossing off something on my to do list or a taste of it here and there. I mean that I have recognized feeling satisfied a lot and I absolutely love it. It is one of my favorite feelings to feel. 

Yesterday I made a phone call to one of my banks because I am getting a new credit card due to a security issue. I had actually been contacted by the merchant and recall not caring much as the transaction was a while back and I watch my account and it’s been fine, as usual. Then I got an email from my bank saying that I’d been issued a new card and it was mailed to me. Now I cared more. I had less than 10 days to get my new card before this one was deactivated and my mail service couldn’t flag my account so I have been checking with them very often to see if it has arrived. I knew and know this will work out fine. So yesterday I called my bank and explained and asked for my current card to remain open for longer, which I was granted. Leaving out the specifics, I wanted to comment on something. The woman was nice and helpful. She kept apologizing. I was thinking in response, “Please stop apologizing. You’re doing your job.” I didn’t say it, I thought it more than once. She also made the comment that she hoped I was having a good day aside from this. I thought, “This is no big deal. I wouldn’t let something keep me from enjoying the day.” I LIKE the contrast. I like new experiences. I LOVE knowing that everything is always working out for me and it’s fun to have it all come together and experience first hand how all the details do just that. 

Last night I returned to the beach for an evening walk and I loved seeing the sunset. It is so beautiful and amazing and something I can’t imagine tiring of. Every day the sun rises and sets. We’re close to a full moon and I watched and admired the lighting on the sand and the waves and the clouds and how the sky was changing color. I stopped very often to look and take pictures. There are moments where you can see the sun and the moon and that liminal time is so cool to me. I love noticing these things and feeling appreciation for them. Appreciation is another one of my favorite things to feel. 

As I left the beach and was heading on a main road, a kind police officer pulled me over. I wondered why and she was very nice and wanted to let me know one of my lights was out. I had a funny moment of not quite understanding her dialect. She told me I could go to Advanced Auto or someplace for a new bulb and that it would probably cost about $10. I thanked her and this morning that is what I did. I showed up fully expecting and knowing that they’d have what I needed and would install it for me. I also had a cash back bonus with them via my credit card. The man helped me as soon as I walked in. We determined which light it was and for less than $12 (less than that once I get the 10% back), I had a new bulb. As he tried to get the old bulb out and explained to me how this light worked (sometimes changing a light is a much bigger process than others depending on the make and how it is built in and thankfully mine was pretty simple and didn’t require a shop visit), he was having some difficulty and went to get a few tools to help. As he tried again and seemed ready to give up, I thought about how easy it was to do it and he tried again, jiggled it back and forth some, then pulled up again and it worked. I learned how to change the light in this RV and this was a quick and easy fix. I told him I really appreciated it and off I went. 

The store I went to next was right in the same lot and I got some thin bagels, juice, and more fresh ground turkey on sale. I got back to the RV happy with how much I enjoy shopping. I especially love grocery stores and now that I have a fridge that is working, I’m loving all the fresh foods and variety I have easy access to. I drove to the beach and got a great parking spot, as usual. I froze most of the meat and made lunch. It was DELICIOUS! Turkey burger with Colby jack cheese in a thin bagel plus fresh tomatoes and a mini cucumber. I also finished off the ice cream and made a float. Satisfaction. Mmm. 

I wanted to write about this more. It’s only a glimpse of all the “little things” in my days that I appreciate and enjoy. 

The other day as I was waiting to turn into the beach parking lot, I recall the moment where I had to wait there and then, as soon as I turned in, I was with perfect timing for another vehicle to leave thus giving me a parking space right away. This lot fills and people drive around it a lot looking for someone leaving, some even park in places that are not actual parking spaces. I stay calm. I know I'll get a spot. I didn't know I was waiting before turning so I would get one until it happened. 

There are so many things working out for me. So many things I may never know the specifics or details of or even have in my awareness other than through the bigger picture. That’s OK. I don’t actually need to. I can be happy and enjoy knowing, trusting, and feeling my way as it happens. And I do. While I have my moments, I pay attention to how I’m feeling. I don’t need any condition to be happy. I can be happy and let the conditions that match be in my experience. And I do. I’ve said it before and I will say it again and again and again: I’d rather be happy. And I am. 

Friday, March 10, 2017

The Best Beach Walk EVER: in words

I began walking left of the pier, my feet in the water as I passed the crowds and headed toward the more open beach. I had music playing and was, as usual, walking in time with it. 

I saw birds. So many small birds that flew together in a way that was amazing to me, in such a big flock and moving very fast that they were almost unnoticeable. I noticed though and I watched as they swirled around. 

I kept walking and swiftly went up to dry sand as a very long turquoise colored jellyfish came up to shore. I'd been seeing a lot of them here and was just talking about them a bit sooner. It didn't surprise me that I'd then see another one and I knew I was safe. 

I continued walking then looked back to see if the couple behind me would stop to look at the jellyfish, too. They didn't, that I saw. They actually appeared to walk right by. There are so many things in the world that so many of us see and so many of us do not. 

I was enjoying the walk and kept going farther down the beach. A motorized vehicle of some sort went by and a woman on it waved to me. I took a moment then waved back, perhaps too late for her to see. Oh well. I briefly wondered if they'd want to give me a ride back. I had not walked this far down before. I was fine though and knew I could keep going. 

Flipping through my music on my phone, I suddenly looked up. A crab! It was like we were just people in passing, paying no mind until I paid attention and jumped back a bit. That immediately got the crab up on its legs, watching me. I moved, it turned to follow and keep watch. We both walked some. It went down, then back up as I got closer. I asked it how fast it can run. It was white and yellow. I was unafraid and ultimately walked onto the dry sand and went on my way. I made a mental note of how crabs are like tarantulas of the ocean. They have some similarities. 

I saw a bulldozer type vehicle and tracks from it. They are clearing land or something nearby, I suppose. It is part of the state park, as far as I know. I rolled my sleeves up onto my shoulders and kept walking more on dry sand. 

A couple of people had come to the end of the beach before a turn and I veered left to turn and see what was around the corner. I'm not sure what part of the city it is but I had a sense of it. I also noticed a pretty blue bottle or glass of some sort in pieces, partially smoothed and thought, the beginning of sea glass

I turned around and found myself running and I liked it! It was easy to run and felt good and my breath was so easy. I looked back to see the difference in my foot prints from walking and running. Earlier I was pondering if one could recognize her own footprints in the sand. There is that expression of knowing something like the back of your hand. Would I know my own footprints? I think I would, if I paid more attention. It also brought to mind leaving footprints in the sands of time and how I'd like to leave both footprints and butt prints in the sands of time. I rarely sit at the beach; I walk. 
As I returned to the corner I saw that the couple were now naked and entering the water. They had ventured far from most others and maybe it made even more sense why. I kept my distance and gave them their space. They were having fun entering the waves. I know they looked at me as I went by and I'm decidedly for skinny dipping, nude beaches, and doing whatever you like, really. They had tan lines. He in particular was quite white(she was already in the water more by the time I got back around to them) and this is actually how I first realized they were nude. I laughed and smiled as I continued on. Funny, happy moments and what an eventful walk this was! Rather different than my more common ones. I liked it! 

I ran some more and it felt good. I found myself walking on the thin center sand within the tire tracks of the bulldozer path. How fun, I thought, as I had simply begun doing it because it was fun and I was inspired to that action, then realized it. It reminded me of kids and my niece who will move so easily from one fun activity in the moment to the next. It flows. This was flow. I was flowing. 

I saw something near the water and got closer. A dead seagull. Newly dead, beautiful, not yet drenched. The water came up to it but not enough yet to take it in. I thought to it, You'll be ok/fine and then added right away, You already are. Briefly I sent out an intention and request for greater peace with something. I kept walking. 

I got a text message from someone I wasn't expecting and figured I felt good, so replied. Clarity and fun and ok ness. A recent message from a dream I had woken to a couple of mornings ago now made more sense. 

More people were around again. Many had left and tide was rising. The moon was up and the sun was setting. I looked at the color reflecting on the white of the waves and had felt like it was so beautiful, I could cry. I didn't. I just loved the beauty of it and the beholding of this moment and realization. I was smiling. I must have been. 

I smiled at a woman as we passed each other and she smiled at me. I saw some young folks who had been building something earlier now getting covered by water. They took the high flag they'd had up and were walking with it into the water, saying or singing something. I had my music playing still and mostly ignored their words. I liked the song I was listening to and the harmonies in it. So lovely. 

Someone else smiled and said hello to me as we passed by. I picked up a large feather and then a little one for my cat. As I climbed the steps to get back to the parking lot, I jumped down and think that is when one flew out of my pocket. I still had the little one and gave it to her. 

I went to wash my feet of the sand and saw young adults in the splash fountain having fun. I then saw a bird on the top of it also having fun. Which reminds me of watching a seagull scratch its head with a foot while in the water. I loved that. And I saw a dog rolling around on its back in the sand and smiled. I am a big cat lover and yet happy dogs at the beach? I still smile at that. 

Now I am back in the RV. I have pictures and video from this beach walk which I am deeming the best beach walk ever. I know the feeling of flow and this was the first time I ever felt it like this here and so easily, strongly, and purely. The lightness, in the moment, playful, easy, fun. This is what alignment feels like. This is what playing in life feels like. This is what feeling good feels like. 

It's a picture-less post intentionally. Words can paint a picture and the feelings, the feelings are the best part. Maybe it appears as if nothing changed during this time yet I know for certain a lot changed for me with it. I stepped onto the sidewalk in the parking lot from the sand to the concrete and I looked out at the big, beautiful sun setting across the way and had this feeling, the kind where I knew everything was about to change. Everything was about the change and in really good ways. I was ready. This felt so good. 

The best beach walk ever is the best beach walk yet. 

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Modes of Travel: A Visualization

Oh, the open road!

So you're interested in traveling and start looking at the various options. The following can be a lot of fun to do whether you're looking forward to some trips, fulltime travel, or even if you're just dreaming and never intend on leaving in the physical sense. 

Imagine yourself traveling. Are you driving a lot? Flying? Walking? Chauffeured? Are you in cities? Towns? Nature? Campgrounds? 

You want a place to spend the night, where are you sleeping? In a tent? Someone's couch? An RV? A hotel room? A house with a bed?  Apartment? Sleeping bag? 

You wake up hungry, where are you eating? A kitchen? A diner? Cafe? Chain restaurant? Local joint? Your backseat? Outside? 

You decide you'd like to bathe, how and where? A river? A stand up shower in the middle of your RV? Sponge bath? Truck stop shower? Bathtub? Gym? Traditional in home bathroom? 

What clothes are you wearing? Are they comfortable? Easy to clean? Fancy? Simple? Versatile? Luxurious? Are there a lot of them? Do you layer basics or prefer a specific item for each need? What are your preferences? 

Speaking of clothing, how is the climate and weather? River or desert or mountain or deep sea? Warm? Cold? Both? Somewhere in between? Sunny? Rainy? Dry? "Predictable" or "unpredictable"? 

You consider how you'll spend your days; in museums? Libraries and bookstores? Hiking trails? Out on the ocean? Canoeing? Bird watching? Exploring downtowns or small towns or out in the desert admiring cacti? 

And are you traveling alone? Are you with a caravan? A friend? A significant other? An animal companion? Meeting folks (known and new) along the way, weaving in and out of social groups? 

What items do you feel you'd bring with you no matter what? A computer? A midi keyboard? A fishing pole? Tablet and camera? Boat, bike, kite,  hammock? Games? Sourdough starter? Hammer? Paint set?

You imagine days upon days of doing what you love, however you find most pleasing. What are most commonly occurring thoughts and how does it feel to be fantasizing about this? How does it look to you if you imagine looking at yourself in action? 

There are so many ways to live and travel. I chose RVing because it was an ideal way to travel the way I want to. I chose a class B because it was easy to get around virtually anyplace and I like a lot of variety and easy access. I could live out of a car. I think it'd be fun to live out of a backpack. I like the idea of subletting or renting a place here or there for a bit, to explore an area more and have a home base that stays put, perhaps centrally located to a wide range of opportunities. 

I've seen some solos in big rigs or class Cs, too. I've seen trailers and tiny houses and all sorts of things. 

You can travel by bus or train or car or bike or plane or boat or... there are so many options! I think it's fun to imagine, let loose of any "reality" that exists in your thoughts and just dream away, taking it in, creating and experiencing your traveling however you would like it. 

Everyone's experience is different and even the same situation will be totally unique to one person than another who is right there, too. 
It's a consistent theme here that I believe there is not one right or best way, but many, all with their lovely aspects for those who choose them. 

I may not always live in an RV. I will always travel throughout my life though and I have fun imaging the various options. 

I'm back from the tech break and have noticed link and pictures that need to be corrected. I will take care of that over time. In the meanwhile, please feel free to use the search option for anything specific as the pages the links go to should all be there, they just didn't carry over from the previous web host. 

I hope you're having a fantastic day! 

Friday, February 10, 2017

Beach Love and Living Like It's My Last Day

So much of my first year traveling involved being in nature like preserves and the swamp that the contrast to being so ocean drawn has been interesting, though not really surprising, to me. I walked solo with such confidence in the swamp, in the very wild nature. I realized how I was able to walk the beach with a similar confidence and appreciate knowing and recognizing that. There were sharp shells and jellyfish and sharks and a gator and all sorts of potentials, yet I intuitively knew where to step, ignoring and also avoiding any supposed dangers. Recognizing the feelings I like to feel in various and diverse places is awesome. It's confirmation I'm in control of my experiences. It cool to be aware of and see it play out. 

I spent around a month in the St. Augustine Beach area with a short revisit to Jacksonville Beach as well. There were times when leaving briefly crossed my mind, however, I’d be quick to recall that I liked being there. I knew the desire to go elsewhere would come yet it was easy to let go of any resistance to staying until then. I began a series of Instagram pics with the hashtag DailyBeach. Here are some photos from beach walking that I’m pretty sure were not included there, followed by a note I wrote during my stay. 

Living Like It's My Last Day

I don't mean in some life threatened kind of way. I've been hanging around the coast and going to the beach daily because I know I love being around water. As much as I can and will enjoy traveling inland again, I keep prioritizing and each day, the beach is where I choose to be. 

So what would you choose if it were your last day? Not in the dramatic afraid-of-dying-so-I'll-do-things-to-cling-on kind of way. What thrills you about being alive? What evokes joy, grows a smile on your face, and makes your heart sing? Are you doing it? Often? Everyday? 

I'm living like it's my last day lately. I'm choosing what I want to do, what I love to do, where I love to be and it's peaceful and good. 

The best way to fall asleep is feeling satisfied and the best way to wake up is feeling eager and excited for more. 

This will change. I will go elsewhere and do other things. The peace and joy and clarity and inspiration I'm experiencing from this along with the ease I feel within myself, I want to keep with me. I want to fuel that fire. In this respect, I will happily choose to live each day like it's my last so I pick the best most feel good choices in any given moment and allow the path of least resistance to carry me to the perfect time and place rendezvous I so love. Being alive feels good. Being here feels good. I like where I'm at and I'm looking forward for more.

Friday, December 9, 2016

After the Fact: A Beach in Florida

During my travels in the Fall of 2015, I experienced many new places. I didn't always track where I was or when, I took it in as I went and enjoyed the journey. I took a lot of photos and texted people. And I saw things and experienced things that simply were for me, not shared in any vocalized or photographed sense, still parts of the whole I remember.
I know I went to Valdosta, GA. I can imagine a downtown decked for the holidays in the dark night without recalling what town that was in. I remember strip malls and then more strip malls nearby. I remember gas prices right off the highway in the $1.50-1.60 range at full price. I remember interesting people and birds in parking lots, dialects, friendliness, and smiles. I remember vibes and nature and culture. I remember numerous firsts for me as a person, a solo traveler, and more. And maybe those specifics that made any given experience a part of the place are unimportant anyway. It doesn't matter where it happened, it's that it happened. The right time happens in the right place and there are many right places.
There's so much that this site will only ever cast a glimpse on things and "After the Fact" has highlighted places I could more easily document and share about. What I can say is that it was filled with fun and good stuff. I'm very happy with the travels and my memories of it. I'm happy with where I've grown to be and how I continue to expand through my life experiences.
So to end this series of posts, I have a few pictures of a beach somewhere in Florida. It was, as far as I knew, a new to me place. A touristy area, yet with its own feel, different from the others I'd visited there before and since. Every place has the potential to feel good. As I stopped briefly to visit the ocean and capture a few pictures, this is a spot I still wanted to include even if I can't quite remember the name of it. And as I looked through my photos recently and saw some of Florida, I felt good, smiled, and felt warm. The feelings of Home.
A sunny Florida road.
A sunny Florida road.
A gator in a visitor's center.
A gator in a visitor's center.
I hope you've enjoyed "After the Fact" as I have. It has been awesome to recap and I am eager and excited for the treks to come!

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

It Doesn’t Matter Who the Next President Is

Yesterday as the day became night.
I recently found myself paying too much attention to what is, the news, opinions, and negativity. In order to even see all that, I had to have had it active in myself some, too. I woke one morning with insight and a reminder of what I know to be true: It doesn’t matter who the next president is.
As an American, I used to think of myself as being freer than I would be in other countries. In various states, I would think there was more freedom or less, depending. I thought of freedom as something granted to me from outside of myself, to a certain extent. It’s not.
I’m free and I know it and I feel excited for others to remember and know they are, too. No one has control over us or greater control over our experiences than we do ourselves. My feeling of freedom comes from knowing I’m free, not because of a president or a constitution.
On this election day, I am glad I voted. I’m glad there is a candidate and a party (Libertarian) I am FOR and I didn’t feel like I was voting for the lesser of two I didn’t care for. I’m glad that this can be a big election in terms of change as the duopoly of a two-party system will shift with the addition of a third major party. There's some great momentum. I’m glad that people have so much contrast with growing clarity of what they want and do not want so that truly only good will come of it, regardless of who wins. I’m glad I know that it doesn’t actually matter and that anyone has the potential to be and do great things. I’m glad that I know this and choose to feel good no matter what.
I’m free. You’re free. Wellbeing really is the nature of all things.
One of my favorite films is Labyrinth. Unlike Cinderella, where the lead is looking outside of herself for conditions to change in order to feel free and happy, the lead in Labyrinth eagerly takes on the journey ahead. Much like with Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz, the man behind the curtain is perceived as in control. Yet Sarah knows this isn’t true and the line she keeps forgetting comes to her in the final moments. “You have no power over me,” she says. He flies away for he must. He can’t control her when she knows she is in control herself.
To the next president, whoever you may be, I wish you the best. May you live in alignment with your true self and act out of that inspiration for "one who is aligned with source is far more powerful than millions who are not" and there are millions who are not who will benefit greatly. We will benefit from the contrast created as well.
And to all others, may you feel empowered to also live aligned with your true self, knowing you are free and can be happy right now and for the next four years and ever more. You are in control of your life. I wish you the best, too.
It really is all good.
This was not long after the first picture above. It appeared to happen suddenly, in maybe 15 minutes or so.
When I woke this morning, I put on Jon Secada's "I'm Free" and felt the excitement of hope, optimism, and relief from today.
Some lyrics to focus on:
"Do you see what I see?
a rainbow shining over us
in the middle of a hopeless storm
we'll be safe and warm
I'm free, I'm free!
things are only as important as I want them to be
we'll have a breath of sunshine when the rain goes away"
I hope you enjoy the day! 

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Some Thoughts on Travel, Happiness, and Living 

"The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page." Saint Augustine
"Birds flying high, you know how I feel..." lyrics that come to mind with this photo.
I follow a fair number of RV related people and businesses online and often see quotes like this. While I love traveling, I don't feel they apply to everyone or that travel is truly necessary like they often suggest. I don't believe anything is essential for everyone to experience. Each is unique and entirely individual so, while I sometimes like seeing these quotes, I don't really agree with them.
I recently met a sales rep who commented how some towns he drives through he knows little about and asked me if there is really something to see or do in every town. I said yes. This came about as I was explaining that I like to go from town to town VS taking the highway because I want to SEE the country. I'm not just driving through it. It reminded me of a woman I spoke with in Bloomington, MN this Summer who talked with me about all sorts of places she or her family had visited yet drew a blank on what to see in the area. Being that she was from there, she hadn't explored it in the same way. Yet I recall the driving instructor I practiced with during driver's education as a teen had lived his whole life in a town and seemed so thrilled with it, knowing the history and sharing with such enthusiasm. (Funny enough I remember he didn't feel it was necessary to practice or learn parallel parking because I'd never need to in the area... I insisted as I was in a nearby city often and even in my own town at the time, there was some parallel parking. Also, seriously, I wanted to know how to drive including parking... I digress. :))
One of the most interesting and like-minded people I've met yet was a 20 something of age skater in Florida earlier this year. I mentioned him previously in Starting and Joining Conversations as a Solo Traveler. He came to the USA from Vietnam as a young child and had hardly traveled more than maybe an hour or so away from his home. That amazed me, yet he seemed so happy in the small town, making his life his own, living how he pleased, knowing lots of people in it. In fact, it was partly that he didn't recognize me that drew him over to say hi. We live so differently still share such similar mindsets and approaches to life. He eats when he is hungry, and sleeps when he is tired, for example. Something so natural as that may seem crazy to many.
Some people have commented on how they are loving seeing pictures and hearing about my travels. For some, it's a neat idea they'd likely not actually want to do themselves. For others, it gives an example that it CAN be done. And others still may be inspired just to get out more in their own area and say yes more when opportunities come. Again, each person is different and will vary, those are just a few responses. I'm convinced that a person traveling is not necessary - I or someone like myself or some other resource, can come to you and we can share in our differences the joys we have in common. That can bring about similar or greater personal expansion and you don't even need to leave your home for it.
"Well traveled" is like "well read." Doesn't how and why and where you travel make a difference as what you read does? I'm not interested in glorifying either. I'm also not really interested in judging your reading material. (One of my favorite books is by Crayola titled, "This is the Moon or Is It?" A great book, geared to children, however, I love it and got it as an adult. It is filled with pictures of what might look like one thing and becomes something else and something else... love it.)
There is also this somewhat common theme of an idea about people in businesses with offices and 9-5 type jobs being unhappy and longing for travel. This is not true! Not for everyone. There are people who have jobs like that who love it. They love their office, the people they are working with, the stability and flow of the job. At one point, I was one of them. If you love your job, wanderlust and travel may not even be on your mind other than an occasional vacation. There can be excitement in your days whether you are traveling or not. For what it is worth, not everyone who travels a lot enjoys it. This is not a one size fits all world nor would we really want it to be. The diversity is vast and fun and amazing.
I love this idea I came across one day:
and so does 8+1 and 7+2 and 3+6. Different can also be "right." There is more than one way to create 9 and there is more than one way to live a happy life and nothing says that just because you're enjoying how you are living now (or not) you can't change things and enjoy a different way later. And again and again and again. It is not what you do, it is how you FEEL as you are doing it.
If you're happy, I don't care what you are doing or where you are located or whether you travel much (or read books - we read so much in this society, without any books needed!) or anything else. If you're happy, I'm happy for you and perhaps our lives will cross paths. We each have something in common with everyone - yes, everyone- and rendezvousing with a variety of people and experiences can happen with or without traveling, reading, or whatever else.  I personally love traveling and maybe I'll be that visitor who comes to you, as amazed and enthused about learning about your life, however you are living, as you are intrigued and curious about mine. That would be fun.
These are some thoughts I woke with this morning and a picture of a slightly cut off illustration I've had for years. It'd do us wonders if we'd shift from "right and wrong" as definitive for everyone and instead just focus on our own choices and desires, leaving the freedom to choose to each individual and the judgement of others' choices for themselves out of it. Live and let live, if you will.

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Rose Colored Glasses and My Expectations 

Every single moment of our lives we have a choice in how we feel. When I write and share about my travels, I am choosing to highlight the stuff I like most, focus on what I enjoy, and include what feels good. I awoke this morning and began thinking about this and how I have options in what I write, how I perceive things, and what sorts of experiences I have in my travels and in my life overall.
Pano at the Augusta Riverwalk in Augusta, GA December 2015.
Pano at the Augusta Riverwalk in Augusta, GA December 2015.
I’m donning my rose colored glasses with the next post, and somewhat with the majority of what I experienced in one state this Summer. I did meet some nice people, see some cool things, and visit some beautiful places there. And that is what I’ve shared. I know that I can choose to appreciate and be happy anywhere. That doesn’t mean, however, that I need to stay when I’ve had enough, or struggle through anything. Easier can most certainly be better! And leaving - a place, some details, the contrast that was lower in experience and best left behind instead of stirred up- is definitely a better feeling choice sometimes.
I remember commenting when one of my relatives croaked about how people were so inclined to talking about the good stuff, the best stuff, the things they loved most about this person, as if she were a saint. That isn’t to be judgmental, it was a noticing on my part. And how lovely it is! Why not choose to remember the best and feel good stuff and let the other go? Why not do that now instead of when a person croaks? And why not simply focus on the things I enjoyed and let the rest go?
I visited Vermont last Summer and had a fantastic time. I had been there years prior and not enjoyed it as much. It was OK, just not my favorite then. I know that I could go back to a place I’ve been and have such a totally different experience. Whether the first was exciting like my New Year’s in Mount Dora and the second exciting like when I saw a bunch of alligators there- both cool experiences, with a very different vibe in the same location, or my next post on Duluth and the Tall Ships Festival, where I’m really just going to point out the positives; if anything, I want to be open to a different and better feeling experience every time.
There is something to be said for having expectations. I expect to meet happy, friendly people. I expect to see new, cool and interesting things. I expect to rendezvous with feel good experiences. I expect to naturally be drawn to these peoples, places, things and them to me. And if and when things begin to feel a bit off, I expect to notice it so I can take a moment and adjust myself - my thoughts, my focus, how I feel. What it comes down to is, I want to be happy and so I CHOOSE to be. What I find very interesting with this approach is how it’s like I don’t even allow myself to go there anymore. I simply do not have the desire to focus on and discuss anything that doesn’t feel good. And this is how, despite some circumstances, I am able to be satisfied with my experiences. I can recall the cool aspects I liked and share those. I can stay positive and upbeat and open to new, better experiences. And I can feel good about it.
So there you have it. Some thoughts and intentions. I encourage people to focus in a similar way. We’re creating our own experience in life - choose what you want and enjoy the contrast that helps you gain greater clarity in what that is.
This won’t be a tell it like it is site. I will be wearing my rose colored glasses for all who want to see. I’m leaving the rest out. I’d rather be happy.
We each see things for ourselves.
We each see things for ourselves.
We each get to choose our focus.
We each get to choose our focus.
We choose how we feel and can choose whatever feels best.
We choose how we feel and can choose whatever feels best.
We can play around with things and clarify as we go.
We can play around with things and clarify as we go.
It's entirely up to us and what a thrill to be so powerful!
It's entirely up to us and what a thrill to be so powerful!