February 12, 2010 was my last day of work in Florida. The following day we finished packing up the house and putting our collection of stuff into the POD, locked the door to the house and drove away from south Florida.
Then, in my head, I thought we’d be going for our AT hike, and maybe a month or two after returning we’d be settled with jobs somewhere in Texas.
But, I’m glad it turned out how it has because we’ve been able to hike another long trail, spend time with friends and family and do some interesting field work.
In fact, I’m completely glad we did everything we did. If we hadn’t perhaps dreams and goals might have been theoretical words on paper. Years ago when I wrote down that I wanted to hike the AT, PCT, and CDT in a corner of my journal among other goals and dreams, I didn’t really think it would happen. But then I realized that those dreams can happen if one is willing to make the changes necessary to do them. It might take time and goals aren’t always achieved in mere days, but they can be accomplished. We saved and planned for a year to do what we did.
I write that “it ends” because our nomadic existence is coming to a close, at least this time around. If anything this whole thing has made me have itchy feet, which is strange because I am a homebody at heart. I connect to places deeply even I don’t or can’t communicate that. This post is being published on my first day back to an 8-5 job. (Why do people say 9-5? I’ve never known of a job to be 9-5.)
While we have loved hiking and doing field work we feel it is time to settle down. My parents have been gracious enough to watch our cats for far longer than I thought they’d need to and it’s time to get them back to a home with us. Perhaps if we didn’t have our animal responsibilities we might be able to live nomadically for longer, but there’s also a little thing called a biological clock. For years, in my 20s, I said we’d look at the ‘baby thing’ when I was 30. Well, I’m 31 and not getting younger. Unfortunately we weren’t financially able to be vagabonds until I was 29 and Chris was 30 or else we might have reversed this whole thing and enjoyed our 20s doing these things. Such is life! You do what you can!
But, this is just one chapter closing and another one beginning. We’ll be adventurous in other ways besides walking thousands of miles in a few months. We will be able to get our photography business up and going, we can plant a long term garden somewhere instead of our hodgepodge of containers like we did in Florida, we’re closer to our family in Texas and the friends we have here (though we wave across a few states to our Florida friends!…and many others throughout the U.S. and world that we’ve met through hiking), and there is a completely new area to explore!
There’s a lot to do and I know I will have a lot to share, so keep reading as I write about the other adventures we take. I have a post on Living Adventurously that I want to write, covering different aspects of what being adventurous is, but I’m still mulling it over in my head. I’ve come to realize that writing is more consuming than I thought.
And some day I want to scratch off the PCT and CDT from my list, but the problem is I keep finding other trails I want to do, too. Somehow I don’t think two weeks of vacation is going to cover all of that! 😉
To new life trails…