“I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. The great affair is to move.” – Robert Louis Stevenson
There are needs, and then there are NEEDS
I know what it means to have a tugging in your heart that must be answered. A need to be loved, when I thought I wasn’t, was the first. Fulfilling that need had both good and bad consequences, but my children, their children, and their children made the journey worthwhile.
The second, the one that defined me as the wondering-wanderer, started at about age 12 when I read Osa Johnson’s “I Married Adventure.” From the first pages of that book until forever, traveling to see the world has been in my blood. Exactly how I wanted to see North America firmed up after I read William Least Heat Moon’s “Blue Highways.
The third thing that tugged at me waited until I was a young mother with young children, all of whom had given me a very vexing day. My 6-year-old son had taught his younger brothers how to climb the backyard fence, then he and his 8-year-old sister had engaged in serious sibling rivalry all day. The youngest boy, meanwhile, had gotten into the sugar bowl and had tracked the sweet granules all over the house.
I was close to being a sobbing mess when my 4-year-old son gifted me with a stemless yellow flower. The adoring look in his eyes turned what had been a shadowed day into one of bright sunshine. Never mind that he had stolen the flower from the neighbor’s yard.
At about 2 a.m. the next morning, I woke up and felt this burning need to write about how that yellow flower had affected me. From that minute forward, I have needed to write as much as I needed to breathe.
Perhaps that is why when I learned about Steven Newman’s book, “Worldwalk,” in which he wrote about his four-year walk around the world, I knew it was a book I had to read.
I quickly discovered that the 1989 book –which details Steve’s optimistic 15,000-mile trek (of course he took boats where he couldn’t walk) across five continents and 20 countries, with only what would fit in a backpack — was not just not available on Kindle, it was out of print.
Thanks to the Internet, however, I found a rag-eared, stained paperback, copy for which I paid $1 plus $3.99 in shipping charges. The book didn’t disappoint, and I highly recommend it to any reader who believes the good in this world outweighs the bad, and who has an insatiable need to see the world, even if from an armchair.
In fact, if you’re the first to request my copy, by privately messaging me on Facebook or e-mail, I’ll mail it to you free. I love sharing books I have read.
Bean’s Pat: Peregrine falcons http://tinyurl.com/b7hasb7 If you want to feel proud of yourself as a human being who cares that we share the land with wildlife, this is a bird that should help. Peregrine falcons, once nearing extinction, made a tremendous comeback after we humans started caring – and banned the use of DDT.