One look at my flag counter and you'll see - I really get around - the cyber globe, that is. My most recent visitor was from Italy which excites me to no end as I've recently been awed by the beauty and food of Italy from watching movies like Letters to Juliet and Eat, Pray, Love.
When I was in college, I studied abroad in Germany for a semester and traveled around Western Europe: Italy, Austria - where I met the pen pal I started writing to in the 5th grade, Holland. Our group had a long weekend in Prague which was a huge learning experience to be inside a communist country. I visited relatives in Norway and Sweden (Hi! family from the old country!)
I determined that my word is Adventure! In the book and movie, Eat, Pray, Love, Elizabeth Gilbert talks with her friends about how a place or person has a word. Rome's is sex. She thought New York City was succeed. After seeing the movie with some friends, we talked about our word. One gal liked saucy. I didn't know until the next day that I'd named mine. I had talked about my travels while in college, and how I'm getting out in the world again, traveling to PA in the fall for a writer's workshop. I told them that I do have a sense of adventure.
My boys asked me about my first plane ride. It was when I was 18-years-old. I boarded the plane in Fargo, ND, and with a few stops along the way, ended up in Frankfurt, Germany. How's that for your first flight experience! That trip was mostly touring with a short home stay and meeting some families and students in a Gymnasium (Germany's word for high school). My second big trip was back to Germany as a college student for a study abroad program. I was there for six months.
My kids were shocked that I was so brave. They see me as safety mom whose afraid of anything that goes too fast or too high, and makes them wear helmets and check in with me all the time - you get the picture. So, when my oldest son heard about my adventures, he said, "Well, you like to travel. When we're all grown up and gone I suppose you'll start traveling again."
I paused, "Yes, I think you're right. That will just happen naturally because I'll have more time to do that, but it's not like I'm sitting around thinking, hmm, as soon as these kids are gone, I'm outta here."
Adventures can happen in big, long flights across the ocean, or they can happen when you venture outside your own door and move out of one comfort zone and into another one.
Today is my birthday - think I'll go have an adventure!
Photo taken at Aalgaard Studios by my grandpa Arne Aalgaard.
His adventure brought him from the old country to a new one, but that's a story for another day.
Journaling Prompt: What's your word? What is one of your greatest adventures?