“I wonder what’s over there.”
That sentiment has been spurring exploration of all kinds for millennia, and isn’t it also what so often drives us as travelers?
Sure, we all have our go-to favorites—those places we know we’re guaranteed calm, a spirited good time or just that feeling of belonging—but each of those needed to first be discovered. At one point, they were unknowns until we took the plunge and spent some time with that destination, giving it a fair chance and then falling in love.
Sometimes we discover a horizon we love so much, we set down roots there and experience it again and again.
This process applies to more than just travel, doesn’t it?
Most of us likely crave a certain amount of predictability, of order, of that feeling (illusion?) of control. I know I do—sometimes to a fault, as my wife and friends can lament.
Get too much of that for too long, however, and the proportional boredom sets in. Soon, we’re looking for whatever is next. Whatever is new. Whatever we can explore, maybe even master.
That’s a cycle I’ve both embraced and struggled with—personally and professionally—many times in my still-short life. It’s the reason I did so many different activities back during my school days but rarely stuck with anything more than a couple years. It’s why I’ve had so many jobs in so many different fields: Sure, I’ve legitimately liked many of them, but there just always came the point of wanting to try something different.
Call it discontentment. Call it ADD. Call it wanderlust or whatever you want, but it’s also largely the reason I’m here at TravelPulse today.
The chance to work again with good friends Mike Schottey (Managing Editor) and Tim Wood (Editor-in-Chief) was certainly a strong draw. So too was the opportunity to help coach this awesome, high-upside writing staff and collaboratively take the site’s offerings to that proverbial next level.
In all honesty, though, those reasons alone weren’t going to lure me away from an editorial-journalism position covering professional sports for a major outlet alongside writers I loved, (one of a few dreams-come-true I’ve been blessed with).
Rather, it was that next, unseen horizon. It was the chance to do something completely different in a different field—at a place that is all about chasing the next horizon.
Now THAT is enticing.
So, too, is the chance to broaden my own traveling palette—especially internationally. I’ve got a lot of catching up to do, along with additional leaps of faith following this big one already. It all leaves me feeling both excited and nervous about the unknowns. That’s a good thing.
It's why my family and I love road trips so much, and why we drive whenever we have the option. (Full Disclosure: It’s also usually far cheaper than all five of us flying.) There’s just something about making what plans you can, fully knowing they might fly out the window when life on the road intervenes.
Whether any given moment is a success or a total flop, it will likely stick with you more than just about anything you ever did while sitting around in the everyday.
My wife, three sons and I have shared 46 of the lower 48 states already, including numerous, weeks-plus cross-country treks and more than one without a true destination. The seminal experience remains our 7,000-mile, month-long road trip spanning much of the country when I was transitioning jobs nearly five years ago. My kids were four, two and a couple months old, respectively.
(They all did great, since I know you’re worriedly wondering, and my wife didn’t leave me during or after the trip either!)
My kids still talk about that vacation to this day, even though they were barely old enough to remember much of it. Still, they recall the aura of accomplishment, discovery and fun we shared together. That story has become interwoven into who we are individually and collectively.
That means it’s part of who we will become too.
These traveling memories are irreplaceable. So too are all the new horizons our trips have opened up and the wanderlust it’s sparked in my children. I hope they never lose that. I know I won’t.
Make sure you don’t either.
I’m excited to be gazing towards that next horizon with all of you.