Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Easily Distracted

I can spend the entire day on the computer. As a matter of fact, that’s what I did in my last job. I was always on the computer or phone. The computer, preferably. I am not much of a phone talker. I can do an entire blog on this, but not today.

Since I have been home, I can’t go but a few hours away from the computer. It’s a little sad. OK, a lot sad. I seriously need to spend more time outside. I will in the very near future. But for now, I’m chained.

I look at the headlines, “special on a vacation," “how to retire a millionaire”(still reading this one…will get back to it), political blah blah blah’s, who wore what where, how to retire …oops, went back to the millionaire article… You get the point.

People have told me to stop and wait to see what the “universe” presents to me. How can I see through all of the clutter? I just got a glass of water from my refrigerator and it overflowed because I was looking at my Burts bees hand wash by the sink and wondered why it cost so much. And, why did I buy it? I think of stuff like this all of the time. I am that person who books airfare and goes back online every day to see if it went up or down just to torture myself.

The Universe. I listen. I say yes.

I found a new hairdresser once she asked me to be her my space friend, I met some amazing people in person that I met online, I found a career online…wait, I see a trend here.

How did “we” function pre-internet? So many things experienced in life are a direct result of the internet.

I learned how to surf (literally), found a job, went to a new restaurant, reviewed one, found a campsite, toured a city, paid taxes, read the newspaper, saw what friends are up to, made vacation reservations, reconnected with friends, and the list goes on and on…

Maybe the answer to what the universe will give you is stuck in this little box you are typing into. What have you found online that has changed your life?

Seriously. I am not talking about the shoes you found on zappos. However, those shoes could have motivated you to work out, sign up for the race, and met the person of your dreams. Do they even sell running shoes? Humm… need to finish that article.

I would love to hear your story. Maybe what you share might help another person realize their dreams. For me, it all started when I Googled “teardrop trailer.” That was on January 2nd, 2008.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

2 Weeks

2 weeks is what a typical company gives you for vacation time for the year. It’s just not enough time to connect with yourself, your family and friends.

In my quest to climb the corporate ladder, I remember how precious those 2 weeks were. After my father died, I spent 3 days in Colorado with my grandparents (his parents), brother, step-mother and his close friends. A year later, his mother (my grandmother) died from complications from surgery. I believe it was from a broken heart.

The months following my father's death, I spent my 2 weeks going to Colorado and Atlanta. I tried to see Mama Lois (Grandmother) and Big John (Grandfather) as much as I could after my father’s death.

As soon as I graduated from college, I worked hard to climb that ladder as fast as I could. So, I put work as a priority in my life. After my 3 day bereavement leave from my father’s death, I was back at work. Throwing myself into my job.

I went to Georgia to visit Mama Lois and Big John as much as I could, but the visits always seemed too short. They were.

After Mama Lois died, I tried to be there for Big John. My brother and I took turns visiting him. It was extremely painful for him to lose his only child, then his wife of over 60 years within a year and a half.

Back to work I went. I called Big John every other day, then every week. I promised to make plans to see him again soon. He would always email me asking when I was going to visit. A few months passed and I finally got it together to make plans to see him again.

The day I made plans, I called him right when I got to my office. He didn’t answer so I left a message telling him how excited I was to see him in the next week.

He never got the message.

Earlier that morning, he collapsed from a massive stroke that he would never recover from. I saw him sooner than I thought. But it was for the last time.

I would encourage you to make those plans. Visit your grandparents, or parents. That job will always be there.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Too Much Stuff

I am missing the road. I miss waking up in an unknown state and deciding where to go next. I miss being outside in open spaces. The past few weeks, I have been living a “normal” American life of being able to shower, cook, sleep, watch TV, and go to the bathroom without going outside. I’ve been back to my favorite eating places, favorite nightclubs, and favorite watering hole. Yup, things are the same here. I think they will be the same no matter how long I leave. It’s strange leaving your home and coming back as a changed person when everything else here is the same. Adjusting to it has been a challenge.

I enjoy being alone. That doesn’t mean that I don’t get lonely, because I do. I am more productive when I am by myself. I worked from home and achieved more then when I went to the office. Maybe it’s because my mind is clear when there isn’t anyone around.

I haven’t watched TV for over 100 days so I have been out of the loop to the lovely reality shows that are on our favorite cable networks. What makes me sad is how many people in this country strive to have the most THINGS in life. There are actual shows dedicated to how much crap they own; displaying all of the material things in their possession. Do they think that it represents a happier life?

I admit that I receive at least 20 catalogs in the mail a week. It’s how I use to shop because I HATE going to the mall. With a passion. Hate it. Hate. Hate. Ok, you get it.

Since living in a 4x9 trailer, I realized that I can live without much stuff. In fact, I could get rid of all of my clothes and things in the garage once I got home, because I didn’t miss them. I am in the process of purging. I am sick of “stuff.” I would encourage you to get rid of things and donate them. We are facing some tough times, so the things we don’t use, could be used by someone else who really needs them. I didn’t need much on the road…

The top 10 things I used every day while being on the road:
1.) GPS
2.) Phone
3.) Computer
4.) ipod
5.) Chapstick
6.) Comfortable clothes
7.) Sleeping bag for cold nights
8.) Shower backpack (kept all essentials in one place)
9.) Towel
10.) Folding Chair

What I brought on the trip that I didn’t need/use
1.) makeup
2.) coffee maker that plugged in
3.) magazines
4.) outdoor shower
5.) dress & heels
6.) too many containers
7.) more than one pan to cook
8.) egg slicer
9.) CD’s
10.) Folding table

I would challenge you to donate what you don’t use. You really don’t need it. I am sure there is someone out there that can use it. :)

Thursday, October 9, 2008


This whole blogging phenomenon is fairly new to me. I started writing because I had to recover from surgery and had nothing better to do while lying on my back. At first, I was shy. I didn’t know what to write. I still don’t really. I usually just say what’s on my mind and since I’ve been traveling, there has been a lot on my mind. So I write, edit, correct, delete, edit, erase, write more, take out some, and then…post. Then comes the waiting…what are people going to think? Will they like it? Will they hate it? Will they not care?

A little of each I suppose.

After a while, the writing starts to shift from… writing because I want to write, to writing for others. I wonder what people want to hear. Why do they read? Why do they stop reading? It’s strange how it can affect me. If someone stops reading…was it my writing, my subjects, or the sudden lack of interest?

It is hard for me to be raw, vulnerable, open, honest, and straight forward sometimes online. I guess because of fear that I will offend someone or it may come out the wrong way. Most of you can relate I think. I guess I care too much about how others feel. Anywhoo…

I went to the dentist today for a cleaning… (Wait come back...LOL! I know…boooring) Yeah, not much of a story there except it was about time! I am going to continue to write what comes to my mind and into my life. For me, it has been sort of a healing experience. Thank you for following along.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

What do you want to be when you grow up?

I wrote this blog while I was in Yellowstone reflecting on where I’ve been and where I want to go next…(pic of me writing it on right)

What do you want to be when you grow up?

Remember that? Do you remember your answer? I don’t think I had an answer. I still don’t. I can relate to people who are still not sure what they want to do in life, but don’t you just hate the people who’ve always known? I guess hate is a strong word… anyway; I have a good friend that’s a cop. She’s always wanted to be one. She loves it still. Ok, how has she ALWAYS known she wanted to be a cop? Like, you’ve ALWAYS known you wanted to throw yourself in front of a bullet to protect someone? Yeah, you’ve ALWAYS wanted to do that. Humm…

In college, I had no idea what I wanted to do so I just picked classes that looked interesting to me and then summed them up to a major. I like jingles. I memorize lyrics to songs on the 2nd listen so I thought…voila! Advertising! Perfect! It’s the place where all of your great ideas are welcomed with open arms and the more creative you are, the more money you made…right?? Um…no. Found out that the younger you are, the harder you work, the less you make. After pulling all nighters to prepare for someone else’s presentation, making very little money, I put down my glue stick and decided to make a change. How about I SELL advertising, instead of trying to create it?

I started selling the ads instead. It was challenging at first but after 7 years of selling “junk mail,” (Yes, I know…gasp!) I decided to try to get my creative back. Like Stella. Well, not really.

I want to LOVE my next job. Is that possible? Do you LOVE what you do? Have you always known what you wanted to do? If you hate it, why are you still there (besides the money)?

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Vet Visit

We are on day 4 of being home from our trip so Maggie and I can adjust to a "normal" life for a while. I have not left the house since I caught the cold bug, but I did yesterday when I took Maggie to the vet. She has been shaking her head and scratching her ear all day so I thought perhaps she had mites even though her ears are both clean. The Dr. came in and immediately diagnosed her with hematoma. As she explained to me what it meant (I’ve never had a dog with this), she said it was “filled with fluid” and decided to show me by getting a needle and puncturing her ear. I held Maggie thinking it wouldn’t hurt, but not once but twice the Dr. slammed a needle in her ear and immediately, Maggie yelped out a deafening scream. Blood came out but no fluid as the Dr. said. I was in shock and held Maggie close to comfort her. The Dr. wanted to put her under immediately and perform surgery. She left and an office assistant came in with a quote of $320 to take a small clot out of her ear. WHAT??? OPERATION NOW??? HOW MUCH???

I took her in thinking that she would only need eardrops. I declined the immediate operation and took the quote home. As I am driving home, I break down crying. I know, I am a softie…as if I were the one being poked with the needle. I felt horrible for putting Maggie in a situation where she would be hurt. I know the Dr. was trying to help but geez, could you be a little more insensitive lady? Maggie has not had any sort of problem with her health so I am lucky.

I adopted her at the Santa Monica Animal shelter on January 14th, 1998 at one year old. I adopted her about a year after I put my 13 year old Shepherd mix, Sushi down from complications of GDV surgery. Perhaps the visit reminded me of the time I had to let Sushi go. That was the hardest thing I have ever had to do.

I am pretty much a mess when it comes to the health of my pets. Whew...

I guess kids are out of the

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

How it Began

How did I make the decision to quit my job and travel the country? It wasn’t easy. It took several months to put my life dream into a reality, but I did it. You know what? You can do it as well!

I was working in a job for the past 7 years that was challenging at first, but since the company merged with another, it just wasn’t the same anymore. It got too political, wasn’t creative, and my interest in selling the product was non-existent. However, the flexibility and compensation were hard to abandon.

It all started at the beginning of the year. I continued to go through the motions of work, but my body had something else in mind. I went for a normal routine doctor visit to find that I had a softball size tumor in my uterus that would continue to grow if I didn’t do something about it.

In February, I had a myomectomy.

I spent a month lying on my back with nothing to do but think. That’s exactly what I did. I thought about my life. Where I’ve been, where I want to go, what I want to do. I am so thankful that this happened to me because otherwise, I would have just continued the day in, day out grind. Most people don’t have the opportunity to take the time to think about their life and what’s really important. In a way, the fibroid tumor was the best thing that happened to me. I was able to start a new life.

I quit my job.

I packed all of the things I thought I would need and grabbed my dog, Maggie for an adventure of a lifetime. We embarked on a journey across the USA in my little 4x9 teardrop trailer. Little did I know how much I would learn about myself. Not always easy. In fact, some things were a little surprising to me. Pushing my limitations. Every night wasn’t a, “yay, campfire time” experience, although I did have those moments.

I didn’t have a plan. There were a few places I wanted to go and a few people I wanted to see. Other than that, it was my planned dream of not planning. I would wake up, look at a map and decide in the morning where I wanted to go and what I wanted to do. This is not a “normal” life, but what is “normal” now and days?

Today is day 3 of being home on a “pit stop.” I am still recovering from being on the road for 117 days. I think it’s because I have a hard time relaxing, among other reasons. In the next few days, I will share with you some of my thoughts and findings of being on the road.

I hope that through my experience, you may realize your own dream. It was one of the scariest things I’ve ever done. However, because I made the decision, it gave me an experience I may not have ever realized in my life. I look forward to the next chapter and sharing it with you.


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