In a few short days, I moved my queen bed, hand painted table set, and dilapidated college futon back into my parents’ place (thank you mom and dad). I grabbed my backpack, and said goodbye – to friends … family… my loving boyfriend … to my home … to that chapter of my life. Maybe I was crazy? Brainless? Maybe I was going through ‘a phase‘? Or maybe I was impulsively acting on a surge of inner momentum, drawn out by the primal call that had been festering inside me all these years. Whichever the case, it felt like I was closing more than just a door behind me.
So I raised my head with vigor towards a bright new sunlight and passed through a window that was once out of reach.
My dedicated involvement with the Engineers Without Borders volunteer group seemed like the perfect launch pad. Our Portland travel team was heading back to Ecuador to construct the composting toilet we had been designing since our site observation trip in march. It would be a good take off point to begin my walkabout in addition to providing closure for the on-going project I had helped nurture over the past year. My initial objective was to see Project Bua through its final phases over the first 2 weeks in Ecuador and then head south to roam Peru. I had always been captivated by the Incan ruins of Machu Picchu; but travel plans aside from that were minimal at best.
I knew only one thing for certain: the captivity of my routine had been revoked and it was time to run free.
I was to live the way I had always imagined: free of all commitments, with no phone to answer, with only my own company to enjoy. Free to experience, reflect, and consider all life had to offer with no strings attached. To spend my time as I pleased, to interact with whomever I chose, with no obligations, no social considerations or inhibitions. I was a drifter of foreign lands, a seeker of wisdom, a judge of truth, a worshiper of beauty in all forms; a nomadic spirit.
The destinations and landmarks were merely a side note. It was the ever changing state of being; of getting lost every day in the world at hand; of rediscovering the core of my being; that formed the roots of my walkabout.
The trip itself evolved as I traveled, and so did I.