For the next few days I’m going to start a mini series about being grateful in honor of Thanksgiving. But instead of a big ‘ol list of happy things, I’m going to tell you a story with each day of thank yous.
I love to travel. When I was a kid, family vacations were the best. Adventures were how we rolled. Every summer we’d head to the Washington or Oregon coast, spend a week with the beach, the surf, my dad’s eggs and hash browns, no tv, late night tile rummy, and a killer-whale floaty named Oscar.
When I was 11 we went to New Mexico and explored Santa Fe, Albuquerque, and a region right outside Taos. None of us had been before. The food, the landscape, all of it was new and fascinated. It was my dad’s 40th birthday.
We road tripped to the Red Wood Forest, we went on a big extended family vacation to Maui, we spent time in Arizona, Canada, Chicago, Boston, Mexico and Montana. My family wasn’t wealthy. We made due with deals and steals, the yearly trip to the beach was the only vacation we took as a family for the majority of my childhood, and when we went elsewhere it was well planned and much anticipated.
For college I went to an out of state, State School which meant my tuition was a lot higher than the majority of students. I couldn’t afford to study abroad. I wanted to go to Europe so badly but I just couldn’t afford it. Illinois was my study abroad. So, as an adult I’m making it a priority to travel to new places, explore as much as possible. Unfortunately this takes time and money – things we’ve been lacking lately. But when I was in grad school I was able to run off to Paris for 10 days, Vegas with the girls, Palm Springs with my parents. Kamel and I have roadtripped to Yosemite and LA, visited his family in Miami, and honeymooned in Cancun.
In a few weeks we’ll head off to Mexico City, where Kamel grew up but where I’ve never been. We’re checking flights weekly for deals to Spain, we would like to do an east coast road trip for our anniversary (possibly next fall), and we have plans to visit friends in Minnesota and DC when we can.
I love traveling and I am grateful for every trip, for every new experience, for every new sight seen. Every time I go anywhere it’s an absolute privilege. I would love it if one day it became a given, an easy choice, something we did without stressing about it. But I will never lose the wonder, or how much I absolutely love new places, even the journey to get there (the amount that I love airports is ridonkulous). I’m incredibly grateful for having the chance to live in different cities and meet all kinds of great people. And I’m thankful to my parents for encouraging to do so, to take leaps and risks and continue having great adventures.