Saturday, November 19, 2011

30 Days of Travel

In addition to National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWrMo), November is also National Blog Posting Month (NaBloPoMo). The idea behind both of these projects is to write every day; in one you produce a draft of a novel and the second you increase your postings on your blog by 30.

In that spirit, an on-line travel network called BootsnAll has launched a daily blogging project reflecting on travel experiences. Each day, they post a new prompt and bloggers are encouraged to "follow the prompts as strictly or loosely as they like, interpreting them in various ways and responding via text, photos or video posted on their own blogs."

Seeing as today is November 19th, I have happened upon this a little late. Still, it all sounds intriguing. Here I go.

Day 1 Prompt - Goals: What were your travel goals last year? Did you accomplish them? What travel goals do you hope to accomplish this year? 

Setting goals is a bit of a challenge for me. I tend to follow inspiration or see what arises. That is how I found the biggest travel surprise of this year - I am fascinated with LA. It was largely an unplanned trip with my son and his girlfriend, where we let each day unfold as we were energized by the moment. I had a great time. I can also see how that approach may be problem.  My post-high school graduation was to go to Australia.  I still haven't been there. 

Exploring LA - Kodak Theatre in Hollywood

What I have learned is that many things in life happen because we plan for them. Australia needs planning.

My goals for this year are to travel in the winter (January 2012) to somewhere in the sun; I am currently checking out possibilities. Any ideas would be helpful. And I need to get on that Australia idea.

Day 2 Prompt - Embracing Change:
Change can be exciting and bring new joys into our lives. But it can present challenges that frustrate or annoy us. How has travel changed you in the last year? Did you welcome these changes or resist them at the time, and how do you feel about them now?

In 2010, I did my first solo trip outside of the country. What I found out through that process was travel can have plenty of challenges. From being stranded in Denver during a spring snowstorm, I learned that sometimes when it appears that there are no choices, all I can change is my attitude.

Day 3 Prompt - Music: Music and travel memories often go hand in hand. A song can inspire our explorations, or it can take us back to a specific place and time. Tell us about your travel playlist and what it means to you.

When I drive across Washington State, I always think of Marshall Rosenberg, author of Nonviolent Communication: A Language of Life. A friend of mine gave me a four-CD set about NVC; I listened to it as I passed miles and miles of agricultural land. Looking back, I can see many seeds were being planted.

Day 4 Prompt - Mistakes: Everyone makes mistakes. We forget to ask for Coke without ice in Mexico and spend the rest of the trip in the bathroom. Or we arrive at the airport for a 7pm flight only to realize the flight left at 7am. Tell us the story of your worst travel mistake.

One of my first journeys I had as an adult was travelling to Mexico. My children were about 5 and 7 years old.  While I was gone, they had a great time with their grandmother, living by grandma's rules (read: spoil them). Not too long ago, I came across a photo from the airport departure as I was leaving on that journey.  They sat on a bench, both hunched over in their winter jackets, mouths drooping, and tears in their eyes.

There it is - four days in one. Will I catch up? Tune in tomorrow.


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