Finding what I was looking for right under my nose


I floated down the aisle of the plane. I couldn’t wait for the adventure to begin. I didn’t care that the seats were crammed together and that my knees would be jammed up into my chest for the next two and a half hours. It didn’t matter; I was leaving behind cold, dank Philadelphia for bright, sunny Florida.

I flew for the first time in my early 20’s and I’ve never lost that love of traveling. A good friend of mine works in a sales position and travels more than 220 days out of the year. He’s constantly on the go, but when we catch-up, I love to hear about his experiences: the newest country or region that he’s checked off his list; his latest crazy airport story; how many frequent flyer miles he’s collected, the upgrade that he managed to talk his way into; and on and on and on.

I’m no fool and I know that travel can be a lonely grind, but there are days when traveling sounds like the coolest thing in the world. When Kathy and I retire someday, we plan to travel to a number of dream spots. Kathy wants to travel back to Positano off the Amalfi Coast in Southern Italy and I’ve long promised her a long, winding trip to Montana. (Don’t ask why? Something to do with meeting up with a young Brad Pitt from the movie Legends of the Fall.) My list reads like a small, greedy child’s wish list after he’s had a chance to window shop online or walk through ToysRUs.

To top it off, our goal is to retire to a warm beach somewhere, another bug that I caught at an even earlier age, but then there are days like the one I had last week, where I wonder why I would ever leave Southeast Pennsylvania. I went out for a run in French Creek State park, a few miles from my house, and I found a kaleidoscope of red, yellows, and oranges.

Why would I ever leave when I got this out my back door?

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