A long, long time ago, Rob and I took our first steps on the Appalachian Trail and felt a combination of two feelings:
“This is so freaking exciting”
“Oh shit, what the hell did we get ourselves into?!”
We later understood that the combination of those two feelings would accompany us down the road of one of the best, most fulfilling adventures of our lives.
Adventure is a word that has many meanings for many different people. For some, it can mean trying out a new Thai restaurant; for others it can be bringing your kid to the zoo risking the effects of a napless day; and yet others seek it out by backpacking through Europe. Whatever it is, the feeling is the same. It fills that deep down hole yearning for excitement, achievement, adrenaline, the unknown. Something you feel after getting out of the daily routine and doing something that gets your blood pumping. It’s this “Spirit of Adventure” that had led me to some self-acknowledging facts:
- I crave it like a thru-hiker craves an All-You-Can-Eat buffet.
- It leads me to do irrational and unconventional things. (Case in point: go hiking for 6 months; move across the country taking what only those possessions that fit in our car; quit perfectly stable and potentially successful careers to escape the 9-5…).
- There is no better feeling than accomplishing something you risked doing.
- It sucks being broke. This realization only came to me within the last year.
These facts have lead me to what I call the “Art of Balance”.
- Adventure is so much sweeter while reflecting upon it at the bar with a nice Stout in tow. tYPnIg adbilittues aslo seemm ot go o;
- Loved ones make life complete. Traveling is great. Family and friends are better. Balancing the two? Utter bliss.
- Money doesn’t make the world go round… but it sure helps. Especially to pay for said beer as mentioned above. Traveling is not nearly as much fun when you are concerned about money the whole time.
After all, that brownie sundae tastes so much better after a week of healthy eating. A summer of play is much more cherished after a long winter (especially after the hellish winter in Michigan like the one we just had, anyone?!). A long grueling climb up a mountain to witness the most spectacular of views provokes a much stronger emotion than that if you just drive to the top. You earned that shit.
My unquenchable thirst for adventure is balanced by my unquenchable thirst for time to reflect on this beautiful, amazing life I (we) live.
We continue to unravel the meaning of happiness one adventure at a time and finding our direction one adventure at a time.
Onwards and upwards!