This time last year, I was waking up in a deep, soft bed perched inside a home sitting on a little hill in Hendersonville, North Carolina. It was the first day of my bold solo adventure, and I woke up groggy from the previous night’s drive from Tallahassee.
It was the first of many mornings (33 to be exact) that I would spend waking up in an unfamiliar place – but to call my journey one of total isolation would be a lie.
My adventures were aided by many wonderful people who helped transform my trip into a lifestyle.
There were Dena and Marie in North Carolina, who took me out for my first apple picking experience. The night I spent with Sheila, noshing on Venezuelan chocolate gelato in the heart of Kansas City. Most notably, there were the Denver boys, and that little blue house on Emerson Street. By the end of my journey, I had found a new home. The location ended up in Colorado, but the concept was much more difficult to pin down.
My home is adventure.
At the end of my roadside traversing, I settled down on a fat leather couch in a living room sitting in Denver’s Washington Park neighborhood. The first few days felt odd; I felt like I needed to be going somewhere. I felt anxiety about not being on the move, and I grew homesick for a life without a ‘home’.
But eventually, the nerves calmed, and I began to indulge in this new life I had created in Colorado. I lived with the best group of climber boys a gal could ever ask for; they quickly became my family. I swiftly grew to adore mornings spent munching on peppered bacon at Café Europa, which turned into long days spent cooped up at home, hunched over writing and growing this blog.
After seven months of playing in the Flat Irons, taking solo hikes along the Sand Creek trail system, and surviving my first snow season, I was hit with some unexpected changes in my freelancing schedule, and suddenly could no longer afford my spoiled Denver lifestyle. I packed up my little hatchback, and drove back down to Florida. Back to a land sans mountains.
But it all worked out just fine.
Since departing from Denver, my semi-nomadic lifestyle has allowed for way more travel than I’ve ever been open to. I hauled out to Flagstaff for Overland Expo in May, was flown out to the Grand Canyon with Columbia Sportswear in June, peppered my schedule with all sorts of southeastern climbing trips, and even attended my first Outdoor Retailer show last month in Salt Lake City.
Living back in the humidity, and shacking up with a clan of climbers who have a strict aversion to air conditioning hasn’t always been ideal – but I’m diggin’ it.
And it’s gearing me up for even more epic adventuring.
Between the planning and preparation for Simply Adventure, and my ever-evolving ‘career’ within the outdoor industry, things have become a blurry whirlwind of deadlines, packages, social media, and more writing than I’ve ever done – all with plentiful outdoor excursions in between.
Last September, I spent the month empowering myself as an independent woman (the climax of which was reached during my first night camping solo). This September, I’ll be pouring every ounce of my being into work.
I’m working on a few big things:
my career, Simply Adventure, living healthier, and climbing harder.
Want to join me for this new journey? I know you have some things you’d like to work on, too. My adventure amiga Gina Begin’s has a project called 90 Days. Her personal challenge is currently a 90-day training haul to prepare for one of the world’s most challenging adventure races. After her bold declaration, our little online community was suddenly swarming with inspiration for all sorts of 90-day challenges.