Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Travel Bug

While growing up, my first experience traveling away from the Midwest was during the summer of 1988.
I was almost 16 and didn't want to have much to do with my family at the time.  No matter, my parents loaded seven of us (family of six and my cousin) into a rented RV and drove us from Morton, Illinois to Yellowstone, Colorado, Utah and back.   Although you would never know by my lovely teenage smile in family photos (shown), the trip lit a fire inside of me and introduced me to the travel bug and my need for wilderness.
The most memorable parts of the trip were things that I learned about myself.  First, I loved road tripping and seeing everything that was new along the way.  Traveling in a camper, with several others, didn't really bother me because I knew a new adventure always lay ahead. Second, I loved the fact that Yellowstone National Park had volcanic activity right under our feet and could technically blow at any time.  This was absolutely thrilling to me.  Third, I loved exploring the new and exciting things around me and just being outside made me feel at home.  For as long as I can remember, I've always LOVED just spending time outside.  This eventually led to living outside (summer or winter) for over 2 1/2 years, which I'll write about sometime in the future.   Lastly, I learned I hated being on a bus tour.  My parents paid for the whole family to take a fabulous bus trip through Yellowstone so we could see all the areas we hadn't seen.  I remember looking out the window, just wanting to get off the bus any second so I could explore.  It was PURE torture.  Being able to touch, smell, hear and experience adventure was something I craved and needed.

Thinking back to that classic family "wild west trip" turned out to lay the foundation for my many trips around the world, hiking mountain peaks, living out of my car (gypsy gal style) and to eventually moving to Colorful Colorado.                                                              

I just love these photos!  Don't they just crack you up?  The one above in front of the tee-pee was taken at Yellowstone National Park.  The photo to the left was taken at Dinosaur National Monument in Colorado (L-R:  me, cousin, sister, brother, mother and sister)

Do you remember how you felt during your first travel experience?  If so, I'd love to read about.  Please share in the comment section or contact me.

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