Traveling means leaving home. It’s a sacrifice we make as travelers. We leave the familiar, the easy and the comforting to explore the unknown. It is a risk but the more we move, the stronger we grow. The more we see, the more our minds open up to the view. It’s funny, really, how afraid some people are to travel this Earth–influenced and persuaded by the media, stereotypes, current events and misconceptions.
The more you travel, the more you realize that all humans around the world are so diverse, and so complex but ironically the same. You end up finding out, at the end of the day, we all want the same things.
When people ask, what is it like? I say, it feels like being a kid again. Basic, everyday tasks take on a heightened significance and entertainment can be stumbled upon in some of the most unadorned curiosities and novelties.
The cultures, the lessons, the people, the food, the cities, the parks, the roads, the languages, the views, the smells… Everything you experience has the ability to get you excited, to get your senses working, to change the way your think, and even, to remind you of back home. To remind you, why, why you’re doing what you’re doing. As travelers, we escape all the daily distractions of back home and we are without warning, faced with getting to know ourselves–whether we like it or not, and accompanied by, not even one drop of mercy. When you step outside your comfort zone, you can no longer hide behind yourself. You leave your ego by the wayside and unlying life rushes in.
Navigating oneself and exploring unaccustomed terrain involves great tests of character and limits, but out of all the intimidating challenges you may face on the road, the act of coming home can be one of the most difficult. Few will be able to relate to what you’ve just done and where you’ve been. When you do return you, “keep living your life in such a way that allows your dreams room to breathe. Because you never know when you’ll feel the urge to hit the road again,” Rolf Potts, Vagabonding.
The longer I am away from my home back in Nebraska, the more I appreciate its innocence and beauty. The more I recognize its fostering and nurturing it has provided me along the way. For many Americans and the rest of the world, Nebraska is a secret, guarded well by amusing stereotypes and what appears to most, a lack of excitement. If the world only knew, if Nebraskans only knew how well they have it. Some of the freshest air , safest drinking water, one of the happiest economies, four complete seasons of weather, lakes to wakeboard on, voluptuous dirt to roost a dirtbike on, a car ride to the Rockies, a plane ride to the ocean. It is almost the definition of living simply. There really is no place like Nebraska, and of course, no place like home.
Maybe it’s incredible because it’s called The Good Life or maybe it’s just because,
that’s where my heart is.