Monday, September 01, 2014

I run because I am a wanderer...

My family moved numerous times when I was a kid. Sometimes it was just thirty minutes away. Sometimes it was halfway across the country.

These moves were accompanied by new phone numbers, new schools, and new friends. I never particularly enjoyed these moves. They were never easy. They were always stressful.

Independent of our numerous moves, we took countless family road trips across the country. From Kansas to Connecticut and back. We drove my sister from Kansas to Los Angeles and back after dropping her off for college.

While we weren't gypsies, our existence seemed at least quasi-nomadic. It seemed we never stayed anywhere for long. Roots were never allowed to grow too deep.

Sometimes I'd wonder if my father was actually a secret government agent. Perhaps his 'real' job was the reason why we had to move so often.

By the time I got to high school I started to identify as a nomad. I never really expected to stay in one place for very long. Very little seemed permanent or stable to me.

I traveled so much that it almost seemed unnatural to not be traveling. If I stayed in one place for too long, I'd get antsy. Wanderlust took hold.

Traveling during high school was no easy feat as I rarely had money, a car, or any real means of going anywhere.

Fortunately, there was one mode of travel at my disposal that I could always count on. While my journeys were never terribly long, they were long enough to scratch the itch. The lust to wander lessened.

I'd travel down back roads I didn't know and stumble onto things I hadn't seen before. I ran down rocky trails startling deer as they meandered through the woods.

I rarely had a real destination in mind when I traveled.  I was never really sure where I was going. But, that doesn't mean my travels were aimless.

I was always looking for something new, something novel, or something to inspire the next journey. While part of me yearned to have a home that felt stable and permanent, I came to realize that the road had in many respects become my home.

My home became an enormous, expansive place filled with micro-climates, interesting people, and surprises. Even if I traveled the same path every day, it was never the same path twice.

Every day I have an opportunity to expand my home and fill it with novel experiences, memories, and journeys. I run because I am a wanderer...

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