“A good traveler has no fixed plans and is not intent on arriving.” — Lau Tzu
A decade ago, we packed up and headed west in our Honda Odyssey minivan. The stars aligned at work and I was able to bid adieu for an entire month. Looking back and knowing that opportunity doesn’t knock in that way every day, I feel tremendous gratitude for having had the chance. And we capitalized.
From our Northeast U.S. base through to Memphis, we all had an overriding and constantly nagging thought: “what have we done?” We bickered. We were bored. We saw and experienced very little to write home about.
But then it happened, roughly and metaphorically, as we crossed the Mississippi. I expect it was that we were finally resigned to the reality. It was also that the landscape changed. The experiences accumulated. We became less focused on the destination and more fixed on the moment. The road opened ahead of us. We opened our eyes. We became good travelers.
And in a Robert Frosterian manner, that trip made all the difference.
Just ask my kids.