I once strolled on the beaches of Florida’s gulf coast. I was a sun gazer. I raised my son near the Florida Keys. He was little then and woke up after a long car ride to being set down at night on the shore smack dab in the warm waves of the Atlantic. We swam in the oh so warm waters of Bahia Honda and bathed ourselves in sun and in sand. We delighted in the sea creatures of all kinds-the blue octopus and the large human colored turtle that popped up to the surface and made me jump. Nate was small then and full of the bajeebers! He was a handful. When he traveled, I traveled.
Natalie’s birth lead us back to the other coast. She was tiny then-just 8 weeks old and a real live beautiful baby. My days were filled with the upkeep of all things pertaining to our lives. Traveling to shop, traveling to transport, and happy then just to be home. School consumed our lives (on all levels…) And when they traveled, I traveled.
As a girl I often traveled alone, on my bike, on roller skates around a 3 block radius, and farther as I got older—to the skate park in the deep cold of winter. I once traveled across Lake Michigan on the Milwaukee Clipper with my Aunt. When I tell her now, this is how and when I ‘got the traveling bug’ she says “I don’t remember that.”
I once traveled across the Atlantic to Paris. Vive la France! I did a short term Mission trip. I sat with friends in Barcelona and waved a teary good-by to a friend from a train (much like in the movies…) I remember that she made a puppet dance and wave with a Kleenex that she had in her hand. Her name was Sara Silva. She was Portuguese. I never saw her again. Shortly after this, in 88, I was filled with romantic notions and the passionate hope of a young woman in love. And he was hoping I would come back. Keith and I (my husband) have traveled together now for almost 25 years. We are traveling companions, I would say. We love to travel. We travel mostly on the weekends, now.
After years and years of stifling hot sun (enough to bake the brain) we catapulted ourselves from the Florida heat, sun and sand to the leafed out green Appalachian Mountains (that we now call home.) This might have been our biggest and our best trek yet—traveling from sea level to about 4000 feet!
I have always loved to travel and for many years even thrived on it! I couldn’t stay put. I mean I wouldn’t stay put. After a few years in one spot I would again get restless and have the pressing need to move on, to see new things and to reorient myself. I suppose that in order to live I must learn some new things. And I’m happier for it. But I would say that as the years turn, there are now some days in my safe and secluded mountain home that my travels are confined to my dreaming, as I gaze at the red sun rising in the east over the treed mountain ridge.
Yes, there are days now, in which my own children travel farther (and faster) from the nest than I do [as in daughter # 1's case (Jasper) as she is basking herself in the sun on the sand of Kauai, as I write this. Well done, here, my brave fellow traveler! Bravo sweet Jasper and family--now she is an adventurer!) ]
Our other fledgling fellow travelers (children) are still around us enough to report their travels back to us (which they gladly do, I am happy to say.) ‘Me and Father’ are on and off (but mostly on) keeping a watchful eye and a keen ear. You never know when there might be a rescue maneuver called for, and at that time we will be prepared to launch (or not, as in my case.) But launch we will nonetheless.