Here are 27 vagabond songs that will make you want to hit the road!
This is not an objection to gift-giving or to all stuff. This is an objection to the pressure society puts on us to give gifts and to the accumulation of meaningless/useless material stuff it causes. Stuff we end up tied to that we never actually wanted it in the first place.
It’s funny how we take the places around where we grew up for granted. I put places like Galena, the top of the Sears Tower, and that Thai restaurant in downtown Wheaton into a box. The box of things that have always been there, so I subconsciously assume will always be there and therefore don’t pay them any attention. Yet when I’m traveling, I get geeked over visiting a small town in The Netherlands, seeing the Eiffel Tower lit up at night or dining at a whole in the wall sushi joint in Brisbane…
I gave myself Thanksgiving Day as a deadline to pick a city and book a one-way ticket. That’s only a week away and to be honest, I was already making excuses as to why I should put it off another month… or three…
I started to research all the places I’m interested in and was like effff this- everywhere has potential to be awesome. I just need to pick a starting point. With that said, for no reason other than intuition, Bangkok it is!
Without the familiarity and judgement that used to accompany thoughts of Chicago, I’m free to take pleasure in everyday things. I am free to treat Chicago like any other foreign city I visit. Going places I’ve never gone and doing things I’ve never done. Revisiting places I’ve been before to see how they’ve changed, soak them in, and build new memories. I am immersing myself in the the local community and strengthening the relationships the defined my youth.
As we drove toward their house outside the city, CrazyTown faded into the distance and The South came into focus. My aunt pointed out various statues, monuments and landmarks pertaining to the American Civil War. Having only ever lived in or traveled through the North and West, this was my first encounter with tangible evidence of the Civil War. It didn’t take me long to notice how Confederate-centric these Civil War displays were. At first, I assumed I wasn’t seeing the the whole picture through the sporadic car window snapshots.
When something awful happens somewhere you’ve connected with, it hits you differently. It’s harder. It’s stronger. It’s more real. When that somewhere is the place you call home, it completely changes you.
After a solid week on the road, we arrived at the Black Hills Bungalows in Custer, South Dakota. Between me getting this blog and other website up and running and my mom starting her wedding invitation business, we both had been on our phones a lot. We agreed that for our 3 night stay in the Black Hills we would completely disconnect from the rest of the world. I only used my phone to take pictures and my computer to listen to previously downloaded music and write. No Social Media. No Texts. No Emails. No Calls. No Data. No WiFi. No Internet.
People react in extreme ways when I tell them I am going to take an open ended trip around the world. Some say something along the lines of “Wow, that’s badass!” and totally understand my desire. While others say nothing and look at me with a furrowed brow and pursed lips as if they are trying to divide 9,978 by 16 in their head. Sure, it’s an obvious statement when you break it down literally: I am leaving Las Vegas to continuously travel around the world with no set plans on when I’ll return. But wait, with who, when, where, why, and how?
In the weeks leading up to my birthday this year it hit me that turning 28 means a decade has passed since my 18th birthday. Ten whole years! That’s the same amount of time that passes between second grade and high school graduation! As an adult, the time goes so much quicker and the growth is less obvious. I started to think about who I was and what I was going through when I was 18, the memories were grim. However, it became glaringly obvious to me that every challenge I was facing back then directly maps to where I am today.
For my 28th birthday, I wrote a letter to myself at 18.