I’ve lived my life pretty well confined to a small area of the Midwest; born in Southern Michigan, near enough to the Ohio and Indiana border to be able to have made trips to both states, and now I live in Ohio, so there’s that. . . I’ve seen a small glimpse of Canada, but never travelled to the U.P. in Michigan. I’ve also visited Kentucky and passed through the states between there and home, as well. And then too, I’ve been to Florida, as well, but just once. I’ve only been on a plane once, but otherwise every other trip was made by car. I’ve led a very sheltered life, to say the least.
The prospect of travel is both intriguing and frightening to me because of my limited experiences. But someday I hope to have the time and money to see all the places that I have heard and read about.
Day Five: List Five Places You Want to Visit.
My heritage is rather diverse, but I want to see all the places my ancestors come from. So that means the Southwestern United States, Mexico, Ireland, England, and Scotland. I am Indian and Mexican, and English, Irish and Scottish. I have visited Kentucky where my dad’s family is from, but I’d like to visit it now that I’m an adult. Those couple of weeks in Kentucky when I was a child were spent at a campground and I didn’t get to see the bluegrass and the Kentucky Derby, I didn’t get to explore. Likewise, I would like to go to Ireland and see all the places highlighted in the book Scarlett, the sequel to Gone with the Wind. I would also like to go to London and see the London Eye – Matt did a school project on London and built a replica of the London Eye a few years ago, so I would like for us to see it in person now. I guess otherwise I don’t have specific destinations in mind for the places listed above. I haven’t thought about it in great detail because it just isn’t on my immediate to-do list at the moment. But I want to see the places where my roots began. I wonder if I’ll feel grounded in these places, if I’ll feel the history of my ancestors and find more out about why I am the way I am once I can see the sky and breathe the air and feel that different earth beneath my feet. I’m on a continual search to find myself and while I feel I’ve stumbled upon a lot of who I am on my own, I do wonder if the pieces will fit together better once I see these places with my own eyes.
So I know I knocked out six in that one paragraph, but there’s more.
I do want to visit the U.P., I hear it’s gorgeous and the air clearer and more pure. I feel like it’s a requirement of a Michigander and feel like I can’t really claim it as my home state until I do. Michigan is truly beautiful and I was born and raised there – but I’m missing an intricate part of home having not explored the whole state. I would love to just rent a cabin surrounded by lake and woods, and breathe. Write and read and hike. . . Maybe take the kids, maybe take myself and have real and true peace and quiet. I’ve thought more in depth about this place because it’s more in the range of possibility for me at this point of my life. Hopefully this visit will become a reality in the next year or so.
Matthew and I have talked about taking a road trip across the United States. I think that would phenomenal, to visit the national parks and see all of the monuments. I’d love to take the boys to the Smithsonian, and Yellowstone, the Grand Canyon. . . That’s a dream I don’t know if I’ll be able to accomplish while they’re still younger, but even if we don’t do it until they’re older, that’s fine too.
I’d love to go to Germany and see all of the history there, too. Matthew has a definite interest in the Holocaust and World War II. My interest is more in the Civil War, so I would also like to see places on the Underground Railroad and battle sites. At this point I don’t know if Chase will be as intrigued by history as Matt and I are, but I’m crossing my fingers so we can do these things together.
I want to go to Maine and see Stephen King’s home, and the beauty of my music festival scheduled in a few weeks is it takes place at the Ohio State Reformatory, the place where Shawshank Redemption was filmed. I’d like to visit New York and Paris and Rome, just to say that I have. Philadelphia and Washington D.C., all of the major US cities are a must.
The problem with being a reader is I have visited these places through books, so now that I have pictures in my head, I want to see the real thing.
I’ve saved my biggest desire for last. Again, for those who know me or have been reading awhile already know this dream.
Once upon a time I had a plan. As soon as I turned 18 I was leaving everything behind, moving to San Francisco, going to SFSU and majoring in creative writing, becoming a well known author and sitting in my house overlooking the bay writing my days away.
Here I sit just a few feet off of a rainy, busy Toledo street, typing this out on my smart phone for a handful of people who enjoy my ramblings.
I did a lot of research on the city, on the weather and it’s history. As a teenager I loved the history behind the counter culture of the 60s – the music and ideas, the freedom. It all centered there in San Francisco, and as I researched I fell in love with the city. Lombard Street and the Haight Ashbury, Fisherman’s Wharf and the houses dubbed the Painted Ladies. The Golden Gate with the mountains in view in one direction and beaches in the other. . . It all spoke to me.
Everything happens for a reason – to start, I struggled moving less than an hour a way from my brother when I first moved out, and the second time I moved out it was over an hour away and that ate at my soul. I can’t imagine being across the country from him. Had I made different choices and followed my original plans I wouldn’t have my amazing boys, I likely wouldn’t have gone through what I have and I wouldn’t be who I am. I’m where I’m supposed to be. Whether San Francisco is in my future as a vacation or where I’ll retire to, I don’t know. But if I see anywhere else other than little old Toledo Ohio for the rest of my days, I need to see my dream city. Just once.
I hammered out two blog posts today to catch up after a rather long day at work. I will say that while these posts are following someone else’s plan, I am kind of enjoying the exploration of these thoughts. It’s getting the words flowing, my thoughts off of things that seem to be dead endings and uncertain. . . I’m glad I took up this endeavor. And I am super appreciative to those few people who take the time to read these thoughts. I write to free my mind – but I write for you all, too.