I'm a recently transplanted New England-based photographer who came to photography via travel. Not the other way around. My "real photography" began in 2015, and since then I've sold prints online as well as art shows and contests around Chicago and the midwest before moving to the northeast. This is obviously not my photography page. (This is.) This is my fourth blog since I began "adventure" traveling in 2008. (The first three consolidated) The traveling began shortly after radio and I divorced after a strained 11-year marriage and I rejected careerism. I had a vision of me, a backpack, and the road; a Thoreauian idea of learning what I could do without and how that applied to "freedom". I intended to go Suvivorman or maybe even McCandless. That whole notion changed immediately after I set off in May, 2008 and I discovered the "Monastery of the Road." The organic observational-yet-introspective energy of life being "lived" in the real world.
In short, and without spoon-feeding you the full context in the "About" section, I figured out the meaning of the line attributed to Muhammed and paraphrased by my Muslim lifeboat while rescuing me from being stuck in Mormon-infested southern Idaho: "Live your life as a traveler." (“Be in the world as if you are a stranger or a wayfarer.”) That's goddamn right.
Over the last decade, I've hitched all over the US and taken several backpacking trips all the way from Mexico thru Central America to Colombia & Peru. While my posts are (mostly) about traveling, I am NOT a "travel writer". I'm not collecting postcards or passport stamps. For millennia, travelers set off to learn more about themselves, humanity and the world in general. In some circles, it's still considered a divine quest; a search for something collectively lost. Here is where I post stories, ideas, insights, even some mostly organic/sometimes borrowed philosophy, occasional videos, and other things.
More importantly this is set up as a sort of beacon for others scratching at the society-based "Splinter in the Mind" wondering if they're broken or outright crazy. (You're not.)
When I first stumbled onto this path in 2004, I was lucky to find someone walking across the country while providing an authentic account of the experience rather than just blowing mass-appeal glitter up the reader's ass. I want to pay that forward so have refrained from sanitizing and/or glorifying the people, places, and things that have become the narrative. You'll find the good, the bad, and yes, the ugly. In both me and the other characters. And hopefully you'll see, as I did, that, despite often paralyzing initial fear, the world in general isn't so frightening once you actually dive in using your own flesh-and-blood senses rather than relying on electronic eyes and hearsay to perceive and, worse, interpret reality. Despite grandiose delusions of snowflake grandeur, we're really not all that different regardless of cultural, religious, or *cringe* ideological preferences. A reminder of our commonality is something we desperately need these days! I've found no better way to achieve that than spending a few minutes connecting with random strangers. Sometimes at truck stops, in diners, public parks, on sidewalks, or just sitting on the side of the road. But most effectively: in their own cars speeding down backroads or the interstate.
Obviously, this is not being crafted as a mass-appeal product to be adored and shared by the vast herd of Matrix Cattle. On the contrary. Most of you won't "get it". Quite honestly, I don't care. And, brace yourself: you don't matter. Your personal lack of comprehension and approval is not a loss of Biblical proportion. This is for the blessed few who do get it; those who know there might be "something more" or have at least asked the question: "Are people supposed to live like this? As though their lives are nothing more than economic commodities?" No. We're not. You don't need to believe in a Sky Daddy or Zombie Messiah to comprehend the wisdom of Matthew 6:24.
I added the above paragraph because the Internet in general, and social media specifically, has spawned a plague. The Plague of Thoughtless and Unsolicited "Opinion". As a result of being unwittingly infected by the Social Media Disease, many of you can't help it. You feel the uncontrollable urge...an imagined invite...to add your often vastly overvalued two cents worth to anything and everything. I moderate whatever comments occasionally drift in because, to be blunt, you're not being consulted. I suspect most of you will need to over-chew on that so you don't choke. That's okay. Everyone's publicly masturbating ego occasionally needs a tissue and a Heimlich. You're welcome.
That's what this is "about." Not where to get "amaaaaaaazing local cuisine and culturrrrrre!" Or which beaches and mountaintops have the best views to ruin with inane cookie cutter yoga selfies. (Stop it, Moonbeam! Even Buddha hates that.) In short, if you're seeking amateur Lonely Planet hackery you should move along. I will be a huge disappointment.