It’s (Almost) Go Time

I just finished burning through Vagabonding: An Uncommon Guide to the Art of Long-Term World Travel by Rolf Potts. My hope was that this book would quash any remaining doubts I had about taking a leave of absence from work, aikido, and general everyday life here in my hometown. To that end, it succeeded.

I won’t go into details about this book. Suffice to day, if you have any interest in travel whatsoever, I recommend you get a copy and read it. I finished it in a couple of afternoons and, being a slow reader as I am, that’s saying something. I was glued to it.

I am planning on taking a trip abroad as soon as possible. Right now, as with seemingly everything else in my life, I’m hitting some snags (mostly vaccinations and a very persistent cold that I’ve had for two weeks now), but I’m not letting them stop me. Given that everything in my life seems to have hit a standstill, plateau, brick wall, (choose the term that you can best identify with), I have come to realize that I need a change.

It’s not like me, not like me at all, to just pull up stakes and run away, and that’s not really what I’m doing, even if I am. My staff is competent, and Paradigm’s new operations manager can see to the day-to-day affairs that have traditionally been mine. I will be in touch, from time to time, to see that things stay on track and offer advice when they get derailed. The coffee shop is coming along, but there are still weeks of construction left before we can open, and others can handle that while I’m away. My family and friends will be looking after Mu, the cat, so she won’t get (too) lonely, I hope.

It all came down to the question of “if not now, when?” I’ve been putting off, well, lots of things, for a long time. A month away will do me well.

Now, I’m trying to answer the technical, logistical questions like “do I bring my iPhone or the Nokia e71?” “Do I bring a bike with me, or try to rent one when I get where I’m going?” “Should I plan ahead, or just see what happens when I arrive?” And, most importantly, “where do I start?” I’m still waffling between three potential destinations, but I’ll let you know when I get there.

I can’t wait.

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