When Travelers Grow Roots

I’ve begun to grow roots. A temporary set, to be sure, but roots none the less. And this is certainly not something I’m used to.

I should have been in New Zealand by now, or maybe in Oz, bumming around on some beach in shorts and sandals and my favorite summertime t-shirt – the one with the sinking ship and the seagulls. I should be flirting with foreign girls with funny accents and drinking exotic beers with friendly strangers.

Instead, I’m wearing thermals and North Face jackets, hiding out in Northern California and stewing in boredom and nostalgia in a spare room in my mom’s house — this certainly wasn’t the plan. But it’s not all bad. I’m glad to be hanging out with my family and drinking beers with old friends in familiar bars. It’s always nice to revisit your past and find out who is still a part of your present. It’s even nice to let your roots take hold of that familiar soil, if only for a moment — and all this coming from Justin the Nomad!

But how did I get here? Well, there’s been a lot of change going around these days, and while I’m always an advocate of change, sometimes it can be a real pain in the ass. Like when (for example) you’re about to leave on a work-sponsored trip to Australia to work for a couple of days and you’ve got plans to bum around for a while in Oz before catching a flight to Auckland where you’ll be living and working for a year, but then the plug gets pulled on the trip and you suddenly find yourself homeless, and jobless, and knocking on your mom’s door, looking for sanctuary. I mean… that’s just an example, a very streamlined and PG example which just happens to be very close to my actual experience. It hasn’t been a fun ride, my friends.

Oh, but what would we do without moments in life like this? These are the times that we are reminded of our own adaptability. We’re reminded that we’re capable of taking a shitty situation, assessing it, adjusting to it, and making it work in our favor. It’s a lemons to lemonade process, for those of you who like overused metaphors.

So where is my lemonade? Well, I haven’t found it yet. but I can tell you that I plan on sticking around for another month or two, and I’ll get to be with my family for the holidays (which may be a blessing or a curse), and I’ll be able to save some extra money which should make my trip to New Zealand a little bit easier and a lot more fun – I’m thinking of an extended stopover in South East Asia before I land in NZ.

Either way, it will all sort itself out. And You can be sure that I’ll keep you posted on my travel plans with this blog. So don’t worry, friends – the King Among Runaways is still on the run – I’m just resting up a bit before this next journey, my grandest yet.


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