The First Few Weeks of the Big Trip

I’ve now been in ‘traveling around the world mode for over three weeks. I’ve run a trail marathon, held a handstand in front of a cow, driven through Montreal, eaten some of the most amazing food I’ve ever had, built friendships, spoken at NYU, laughed so hard I cried, cried so hard I laughed, sold everything I own less 15 things, gave up my fantastic apartment, said goodbye to some amazing friends driven over 2000 miles and flown on four flights. It is amazing that this is real. This trip has long been a dream, not in an obvious way. Lessons learned:
Border patrol would love to hear a made up home instead of trying to comprehend what no home base really is
Traveling stateside is way too easy for me, as I know more than one good group in every town I’ve been to so far. This is fantastic but also makes me have to choose, which is lame. There are some amazingly beautiful places. Natural beauty is just part of it.
I feel like I want to move to NYC when I’m not there. When I spend a short period of time there, I wonder how any can spend time.
Light packing is the way to go.

The most common questions I am getting are related to ‘where is first’ and ‘how long is the trip?’

I’m sure the questions will change and the duration of the trip, and my appearance, change. My first non US destination was Montreal, where I visited good friends Sarah, Mark and Todd. Sarah is about to have a baby, Mark is the proud dad and Todd is setting himself up to be the lovable uncle. I wish Sarah and Mark all the best wishes in the world for Hayduke (what I call all non talking babies). I’m doing all my computing, and blogging, from an iPad. Normally, at this point I would hunt for a picture of the three of them, but no multitasking = no pictures. You can check flickr where all my photos live:

I was visiting Montreal because I was visiting Burlington, Vermont. Specifically, I was visiting the Meyer Farm in Hardwick. A very, very special place to be. Organic Dairy is their product. Family operation that goes to Stoneyfield Farm Yogurt. Some of the best people I’ve ever met.

I’m flying with JetBlue on the All You Can Jet Pass, which is a once yearly sale where they sell unlimited flying passes to anywhere they fly for $600-$700. I did it last year as well. Just an amazing deal, every flight is working out to be about $50, this is to go to Burlington, New York, Austin, Portland, San Francisco, Las Vegas, Costa Rica, Orlando and Columbia. Oh yes, Columbia is my first ‘real’ stop. I don’t know more than a handful of people in Bogata and won’t be traveling with anyone. This trip has been super fun already. Lots of interesting people and a total change of my mindset from production to detail. Instead of ‘must turn into work’ I’m much more ‘must observe.’

Observing is sure easy with a good bottle of wine and great company.

No notable really good stories or adventures. Lots of amazing spaces, people and meals. Highlights:
Dinner at Annie’s in Hardwick. They do a ‘buy a share’ deal where you pay $1000 and over the next four years get a $25 voucher every month. The result is a little up front capital for the restaurant and an incentive for repeat customers. The dining room was packed (I wouldn’t call Hardwick a place in my top 100 to expect a fine dining meal), and packed with a lot of the producers that made the food. The bread maker sat next to the dairy farmers who sat next to the veggie guy. Saying goodbye to everyone in Boulder, and not having the whole town burn down. I can’t say how good of friends I have there. I had a proper sendoff.
New York City is crazy to me. Speaking at NYU was super fun, some of the most amazing students I’ve ever run into, hope to make it back (thanks Kristen!).

This week I’m in Portland, Seattle (for, then to Klamath Falls, Oregon to hang out with family, an Oregon State football game and then Portland for more family time. Then Vegas.

Now that I’m off, I’m off. It still has not hit me on the trip that I’m on.

Sent from 30,000 feet above Montana with a baby in the row right in front of me. Middle seat, 6 hour flight. Not that bad.






3 responses to “The First Few Weeks of the Big Trip”

  1. Ef Rodriguez Avatar

    That cow looks smarter than me.

  2. Mark Avatar

    Sarah didn't make the cut, but here are the three of us. So great to see you, Andrew!

  3. Brett Borders Avatar

    Cool andrew…happy trails. I did a two year RTW trip and it was great stuff… worth every bit of the effort… the only downside is that I feel like it changed me in ways that not everyone can relate to.

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