Wow! Here we are…the VERY FIRST blog post of TheGentleTraveler.com. Suddenly I have a case of frozen fingers. Doubts flood my brain. Fears creep into the corners of my consciousness. Will this enterprise really work? Will anybody even read this? But, ah! Dear reader, if you are reading this post right now then there is at least one who has taken the time to check it out! Hurray, and thank you!
So here I go on another adventure. Up the California coast from my hometown of San Diego to stand at the foot of the mightiest trees on the planet. The redwoods– thousands of years old. Thousands of feet up. I will just stand and stare. Do I dare hug? My human hands will only cover one-sixteenth of their girth. But it will be enough. They have called to me. I have no choice but to go. I have only breadcrumbs as to why. I am writing a book, the “work of a lifetime.” Nothing special, just my soul’s journey. And I have to go to the redwoods to write it. They have something to say to me. I have no idea what.
Thus, another adventure begins.
I have to admit, this is not my first rodeo. I’ve seen a little bit of the open road. I’ve crossed some water, flown in a few planes, biked up a hill or two and walked quite a few miles of trails in my day.
In the past, “in my younger years” as they say, I think I traveled to get away– from old loves, from dead end jobs, from responsibilities and burdens, whatever. Travel helped me to clear my head and gain a perspective and I don’t regret any of my wanderlust. After all, all of the experiences I had on the road and immersed in other cultures helped to shape my particular reality, lent themselves to my perspective and made for great writing material to boot.
The difference this time– and its a big one — is that this time I am not traveling to get away. As I pack my bags and look to the road ahead, I am doing it with eyes wide open. This time, I travel looking forward and I travel in the name of Service, my own unique Service. This time I am committed to traveling consciously.
So what exactly does conscious travel mean? A quick search around
the internet will bring up everything from self-care on an airplane to ecotourism. The website conscious.travel.com says that the term Conscious Travel describes “a movement, a community and a learning program that enables places to attract and welcome guests in a manner that doesn’t cost the earth. The operating model that has created a global tourism industry is dying and a new model is emerging. The rules of the game are being re-invented, right now.”
If one wanted to contemplate the changing landscape of the travel industry itself, I like this definition a lot. I like being part of new models and in on the cutting-edge of the evolution of consciousness. But to me, conscious travel is something a bit more personal. To me, its about awareness, intuition, following that intuitive nudge, the call of the earth, if you will, that says “Go there.” And even if you don’t know why, you know that you have to go there. No matter what it takes. Why? Perhaps your mind doesn’t quite know why (You are going where? It cries. But what about….). There is that other part of you, however, that digs in deep. The itinerary is set. Your bags are already packed. Oh yeah, you’re gonna go there alright.
In my life now, I am more concerned with the internal itinerary– first and foremost. Be true to that agenda and all other appointments will fall perfectly into place.
I look forward to sharing our paths together on this website!