I’ve been thinking a lot about you lately. I spent the last two weeks hiking through the canyons of Southeastern Utah with 10 high school kids and 3 other instructors. We played games, sang our hearts out, talked about time and perspective and memories, sat through classes under the sun and blue skies, cooked up feasts of every variety of cheesy pasta you could imagine, learned each others’ stories, and soaked in every moment fully. I discovered my passion out there, my dream job.
Of course I don’t have to tell you this because you know it all. I never fully admitted it, but when I started this blog almost a year ago, I started it for you. You always hated it when I left Chicago because it meant another few weeks or months of worry, and thus I hated leaving you. So I started this Intentional Wandering blog to let you know I was alive, and living, and to try to explain why I do it; why I travel to new places, why I throw myself into the wild without a rope, why I hike and run and explore. You used to check the iPad every morning to see if there was a new post and every time I wrote one and clicked that “publish” button, I thought of you. I thought of the joy it would bring you (and Papa) to know where I was and what I was thinking.
Before I left for Overland, I came over to check in. We talked about my latest post which was about riding a train from Seattle to Chicago. You told me about how you used to ride the train to the east coast when you were young. We reminisced on watching the landscape fly by, the tranquility of the bobbing train car, the conversations with strangers in the observation car. We shared those memories together and I’ll never forget it.
Now you don’t have to worry anymore and I don’t have to write in my blog as much. Because you’re with me. You were with me as I drove out to Denver 6 weeks ago. You were with me in the mountains as I was learning to ski. You were with me in the canyons as I discovered my dream. You were with me as I watched the desert-canyon sunset in magentas and violets, breathed in the wind that whipped across the sandstone, fell asleep wondering up at the stars. You’re always with me and I find great comfort in knowing that. Now we can explore the world together.
I love you, Gramma.