Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Adventure! It's not just for the adventurous...

Today is January 1, 2013.  I often wondered if the planet would make it this far.  It seems to keep limping along despite the policy makers and war mongers.

So, what did you do to celebrate this cataclysmic event - the coming of 2013?  I decided to stay home with my dogs.  It's strange that when you get older, you start seeing things a little more clearly.  You see the importance of the people around you (I include my dogs in that category).  They are dears who put up with me in very trying situations.  They also eat cat poop, but that's a story for another time.

What do I mean about being adventurous?  I mean that, struggle as I might with wanting to stay home and remain comfortable... I continue to hurl myself out into the void.  I push myself into adventures.  I set sail with a wing and a prayer.  I just go.

Now, most of you would think that travel isn't a big deal for someone like me.  I go every year, after all!  I travel (mostly) alone and ride the ride for all it's worth.  But... it's not easy.  The older you get, the more attached you become to home.  Leaving becomes continually harder and harder.  Putting my beloved pets in the care of my friends at Covered Wagon Kennels and heading to parts unknown for 2.5 weeks will be a test in my travel fortitude.

Sometime, maybe this year, I will call it quits.  But, until that time, I eagerly look forward to things I only dream about until the day I leave.  

What do travelers dream about?  For me, it's freedom from the day-to-day.  It's knowing that I will come out of this trip having learned something I never planned on learning.  I will have seen things that I didn't know I was going to see and I will meet people - wonderful people - who may become my lifelong friends.

Several years ago, I met the McMahons at one of my favorite London B&B's (Melrose House).  I still get cards from them on major holidays and remember the spunky Irish couple very well and with great love.  

My trip a couple of years back included meeting a distant relative and her husband.  We still write and keep in touch.  What a wonderful couple who took me all over the Cotswolds and on to Oxford.  People I barely knew!  And, of course, I can't go without mentioning Sandra and Neil Penney, Kim Humphries, and Greg Nickson - dear friends who I've known for years and only get to see on these England vacations.  

So, I dream about catching up with dear friends and meeting new ones.  

And the last part of the dream is to share what I've learned with others.  I may not be the most knowledgeable traveler or the best historian, but I can share the love of England and the things I *have* learned.  It brings the trip full circle.

2013... will it be a  year of triumph or trial?  What will the following months bring?  With any luck, they will bear wonderful fruit to someone who would otherwise be sitting at home on a comfy couch watching Turner Classic Movies with her dogs.  Let's Adventure... let's take a step off the cliff and see if we fly!

I'm ready. Are you?