Monday, June 14, 2010

catching up

It's been a long time. I didn't want to write about coming home and the struggles I was having because it made me a little embarrassed since people are signed up for stories about adventures, not struggles. No matter where you go in the world, no matter what adventure you have, what weird food you eat, I think there is no place you can go that is stranger than back home.

I have now made it into the next phase. The getting ready to leave again phase. Some of the struggles of coming home are still with me. I'm still kind of awkward in conversations. Finding the balance between sharing experiences and being 'that traveler' who talks all the time about being somewhere else. Finding how it fits to be back here. Here has changed, I have changed, the prior slot that I fit into doesn't serve anymore. Carving out a new niche has been difficult. The things that I missed, that I just wanted to come home to didn't exist anymore. Well, they do, they just look different and it took me a bit of time to find them. A realization that sometimes we travel because when you're having a shit day in Peru, you're kind of proud of it. "Look at me, I'm experiencing things, I'm having a shit day in Peru." But when you're having a shit day at home, it's just a shit day, you know? Makes you want to get back out on the road. But I think it's a good realization. You're still you and your life is still your life anywhere you go. Good and bad days happen.

At this point it's looking like Guatemala to begin with. It looks like I will have company leaving the country again this time. I am glad about that. It's a whole lot more fun to at least begin your adventures with someone else. Get the hang of a new country with someone at your shoulder. How long we travel together will be totally up in the air, but I enjoy having someone to plan the beginning with. The agreement is to leave Portland and arrive in San Pedro together, however that happens.

We have agreed to leave Portland together the day after Christmas and start heading south. There are lots of ways that could look. He kind of wants to drive his RV down but we think that will be too expensive finally. But maybe some other vehicle. We are looking at bussing all the way through Mexico. Flying down - where is the best option has proven an interesting conversation. I would rather go to Cancun cause it's cheapest to fly there and then just bus down, he did that last year and would rather take a different route. It's fun to be having all of these conversations with someone here. Trying to figure if we will make good traveling companions or not. The option that I am really hoping for is that his step dad has a sailboat and is talking about sailing down. I would really really like that. Whether or not the plans come to fruition, they are a fun part of the journey. I used to be all about not planning anything, now I have decided that I like the planning. I am just not attached to any of it actually happening according to the plan.

I could still just end up in Zimbabwe.

The long term goal still exists. There is still a ranch that lives in my imagination and my dreams. The beauty of an imaginary ranch is that there are no space constraints and no funding worries so it is still growing in my mind. No idea gets said no to yet. It is still the fundamental mission from whence all work and ideas flow. I have a list of useful humans that grows as I move around the world. Expect an email in 8 years or so inviting you to drop everything and move to Central America and help build the ranch. I am still going out into the world to do my best to get smart enough to make it the best place it can be. I'm still excited about it.

I am so grateful for the support that I receive from the people in my life. These dreams and adventures would never be possible without a gaggle of folks willing to support my ass. Give me places to live, love me even when I can't figure out who I am. Help me find work. Tell me that I can do it. I know very well that this is not the solo adventure it looks like sometimes. I am humbled that you find me worth it and knowing this gets me through sometimes with an amount of grace that I wouldn't have alone.

I look forward to what this next adventure brings. I am hoping to dig my teeth into somewhere for a longer time. Really get a feel for what it's like to help out at an org. for long term. There is a place on a river in the jungle in Guatemala really similar to what I'm looking at doing but on a much larger scale. They started in 1977 so I'm really curious to visit there and hope that I love it and end up staying for a while. I think there could be a lot to learn from it.

So, starting to get excited again. Looking forward to summer as only Oregon can give it. Looking forward to enjoying the next six months and looking forward to getting back on the road. Everybody start making travel plans for Central America next year!