The Road Traveled

As a young girl, I was fascinated with maps and exploring where they would take us. 

Exploring different ways to travel to my Grandparent’s house by roads with different names, roads on a creased – huge as a child – piece of paper, interesting roads that circled and snaked to their house. 

Where we lived, the freeway had yet to arrive. Hills, farms, ranches, and even streams made for great scenery as I sat in the back seat – down so low my view was the window crank and the top of scenery and sky as they passed.

I was always ready for the road. I loved being able to jump in and go anywhere because I would see things familiar and new. I may meet new people. It was exciting.

Jump forward and as I got older, my desire to travel increased with the lessons I learned in school. It was fueled by my paternal Grandparents who traveled overseas on many occasions and even lived abroad for a few years.

My Grams Air Mail letters were filled with descriptions of what she saw and experienced, as well as who she met and little anecdotes. Occasionally, there would be a word in a foreign language she learned.

Letters and descriptions would arrive from The Taj Mahal, the Great Pyramids of Giza, several Scandinavian countries, Lebanon, Thailand, the United Kingdom and more. These were all places we studied in school and I was receiving first-hand accounts from someone I loved who was seeing these magical places through her eyes! 

History was exciting. I couldn’t wait to see these places for myself and it became my road trip plan. The culture, the people, the history, and the beauty. My history essays began to be masterpieces of a travel addict. A required 4-page report became 30 with cut out or copied photos. 

When I turned in these reports, I would get what I considered a look of amazement from teachers. However, most likely, they were looks of terror from the fear they may have created a monster. 

As one whose genuine excitement about exploration resulted in any conversation that was centered on my love of travel and people becoming loquacious. My excitement in sharing what I had discovered had released a flood of facts and questions rolling over one another like a flash flood and now they HAD to read it too! 

Other girls wanted everything from pearl necklaces, mohair or cashmere sweaters; horses and canopy beds. All made them happy. 

For me, it was travel. And what’s a good trip without music? And then a camera to capture what I saw. I saved for those goals. Remember when developing your film could cost as much as the hotel did for your trip? 

For years, I could remember every conversation with those I met. Their daily lives, their families and how history had affected them

I traveled as a kid mostly in the Western US, Canada and Mexico. Making friends along the way, my family and I loved being there for their celebrations and family gatherings.

In my 20s, I began traveling internationally. I was able to expand my horizons and meet new people, exploring new cultures and witness soon to be historical changes that were happening at the time.

Travel brought me many beautiful memories. It brought new people into my life. It also brought me home.

I’m not just talking about domestic travel, I’m talking about the collaboration with some outstanding change makers and survivors. Individuals who are out in the world spreading hope, kindness, change, tolerance and Love. 

All my “roads” have brought me here to a community of individuals of various cultures, background and life experiences that opened their hearts and shared Love. 

Jump in the car with us, enjoy the ride and share our journeys. Love is your reward.