Home to Kentucky!
Next we decided to drive 9 hours to Lexington, KY, my hometown. Honestly, we laid on the couch and watched the Olympics, and it was exactly what I needed. It felt so good to be home, and I wish I could have stayed longer. My parents gave us a million tips, food items, and ideas for the trip ahead, so we’re still psyched to move ahead.
Tips for moving forward:
- Set up/test your tent in advance. The diagram to set it up was extremely confusing, and my dad helped us sort that out. I’m so glad we practiced in advance, because it saved us a big headache later.
- Get something to sleep on inside the tent, whether it’s a sleeping mat or an air mattress, and test that out, too.
- Stock up on food, and use a good cooler that will keep your things cold for several days. Life saver/money saver!
I also wanted to refer back to the National Parks IMAX movie I mentioned seeing in Washington, DC, because it really impacted me. The goal of the film is to expose viewers to the value of the national parks, and our communion with the outdoors—particularly in America.
I feel like something is lying dormant in me, unused, unexercised; A longing that I didn’t know I had, but that I need more than anything else—moving me to the point of tears. Humanity’s raw connection to nature, and our ability to live in the elements outside of our day to day comforts now seems imperative. It’s almost as if living inside your comfort zone constricts something unidentifiable, but crucial to access within our spirits. But you can't even understand it until you’re exposed to the beauty and majesty of the outdoors.
There are people (men and women) in this word who run, climb, and bike the natural wonders of the world, and I can’t help but admire their stamina, strength, and pure passion for communing with our beautiful earth in a way deeper than just ’seeing’ the sites (though seeing them is a good start, of course). And further, the freedom that comes with this lifestyle puts all of my daily struggles to shame. All the worries, “I should be doing this” thoughts, disappointments, and heavy expectations seem utterly unnecessary in light of the big picture view.
I struggle to be lighthearted. I tend to be uptight, and envy those living with ease and freedom. Somewhere along the way, the weight of my own expectations over my life led me to compare myself to others entirely too much, rather than staying in my own lane. I’m really excited to experience our beautiful Earth and shed some of my egocentric thought patterns that have developed since I moved to New York.
While I don’t want to put too many expectations on this trip, I’m excited for the the awe-inspiring experiences, as well as the unexpected struggles and detours along the way. I invite the Earth to teach me that sometimes you just need to let go, accept, and ride the wave at hand.