On the plane home from Tortola last Friday, I thought about the traveling I've done in the past year. It feels like a lifetime ago; but less than a year ago I was actually in Prague, enrolled in that self-awareness class disguised as a TEFL course, created solely for my generation of post-grad twenty-somethings trying to 'find' ourselves. Prior to that I'd embarked on my first journey to Sweden, where at the time I thought I was actually going to settle down and live. After Prague came Ireland, where Michael and I climbed the highest peak on the Emerald Isle, an adventure that remains at the top of my list of un-planned, extremely rewarding experiences. Then back to Sweden for a few months, home, off to the Caribbean, to Blake's in Charlotte, back home, down to Florida, home, to Bermuda and back, and finally to Tortola via sailboat and back again on yet another plane ride. Added up, I think I took close to 20 different plane rides in the span of less than a year...
Have I arrived? Since my first trip to Costa Rica back in college, I've dreamed of making a living somehow through travel. I've certainly got the travel bit down. Now I have to figure out how to make the living part of it work out. I'm on my way. This last deliver (which I did for free) was excellent experience, and a great addition to my resume for future trips. I'm supposed to leave for the Bahamas on another boat next week, this one paid(!), then what? A winter in Annapolis, returning to my roots, to the job that started all this sailing nonsense, back working with my friends at the Woodwind. And my fingers are crossed that this spring's plan will work out - I'm off to Sweden again, this time with contract in hand to deliver sailboats around the Baltic for a charter company. After that it's back to the Caribbean to sail from St. Martin to Trinidad with a dozen kids in tow.
So maybe it's finally starting to take shape...? I've secured a column in Spinsheet, where each month I'll get a full page to write about, well, whatever I want to. I'm going to focus it on adventure travel, with an obvious tilt towards sailing. But I want to write about more than just sailing, because I believe that people are also interested in just reading good stories. I've got a lot of them up here in this head of mine, and they're all true. I'm finally finding out that there might be an outlet somewhere that could even be worth my while.
But as for this blog, I'm taking a cue from Tiffany, and writing about whatever I feel like without thinking about it. It's funny, because even as I'm writing this, my mood has lifted, I've started dreaming again, and the words are writing themselves. I sat down yesterday to write January's column for Spinsheet and stared at the screen for 10 minutes before typing a single word. And then each word had to be wrestled from my head, and the whole process of writing 850 words was excruciating. The finished product, after much editing on my part, is pretty good I think, but it wasn't easy. This is easy. Thanks Tiffany.