Okay, that title is misleading because it makes it sounds like I “caught” the travel bug, when in reality I think it’s in my genetic makeup. Traveling is something coded in my DNA that can’t be erased. I LOVE to travel. A lot of times, I measure my memories by the places I’ve been.
As a small child, I could entertain myself for hours with a globe or a Rand McNally Road map (remember those before GPS?). I could stare at the intricate web of roads and geography for hours, imagining the destinations and what it would be like to go there.
When I was in elementary school, my friends dreamed of being teachers, veterinarians and doctors… I wanted to be a travel agent (no lie). And when I was old enough for sleepovers, I never had any qualms about leaving my house and staying somewhere else. It was always an adventure to me.
When college finally rolled around, I took every opportunity available to go somewhere. I said I would make it to the both coasts of the Continental USA by the time I graduated and most people thought I was silly. That was my goal and they didn’t think I could do it.
Spring semester of my senior year I made it to Los Angeles through a school trip with Mock Trial (a free trip I might add) and New York City with my friend who had an interview and invited me to come along. Goal accomplished.
The rest of that semester was filled with weekend trips to see friends and multiple trips by car and plane with Mock Trial across the country. I went from never having set foot on a plane to riding in 10+ planes in a 4 month time span. It was my most memorable semester. I always thought I would love the jet set lifestyle and I loved it more than I could have imagined…living out of suitcases and sitting around airports across the country, waiting for the next plane to take me to a new place. I felt alive in a way I never had before.
After college, I had big plans. I was going to move to Brazil for a year or two and teach English, or maybe go to graduate school in Puerto Rico or somewhere else in the Caribbean. But life has a way of changing our plans and I ended up in Georgia.
I’m not complaining, because I wouldn’t have met my husband if I had followed through with Brazil or Puerto Rico. As much as I love to travel I wouldn’t trade life with him for a life of planes and destinations.
But the need to travel has NEVER left my veins. I don’t know how to describe it other than saying I need to see places like I need to breathe air. There’s something deep inside me that just NEEDS to see and experience new places. It’s an adrenaline rush that can’t be matched for me personally.
When my husband and I got married, I was more concerned about where we would go on our honeymoon, than the wedding itself. I still take every possible advantage to go some place new to the chagrin of my poor husband who doesn’t share the same enthusiasm (but I think he’s starting to catch the travel bug or admit defeat).
Now writing has afforded me new opportunities to travel and the travel gene is racing to life in my veins like an out of control virus. So, I’m planning to travel A LOT. Some will be book related, other trips will not.
On the book travel front, I will be signing at the Apple Festival this year in my home town and I will be attending a SIBA event in New Orleans this fall.
Next year I will be going back to Book Expo America in NYC and a trip to Alaska (yeah, Alaska isn’t book related, but I could be inspired, right?).
So, as I did in college I’m setting a new travel goal (2 actually):
(1) I will make it to all 50 states of the USA by the time I’m 35;
(2) I will make it to every continent (minus Antarctica) before I die;
Goal set. Time to make it happen. 🙂