“A good traveler has no fixed plans and is not intent on arriving.” -Lao Tzu
We made it back to our hometown in Minnesota nearly 11 weeks ago. In that time, we’ve gone through all of our belongings and gotten rid of more things; I’ve found a job; and we’ve begun settling into a different life in Minnesota.
My aunt and cousin visited from Colorado, and we took them out on the water.
I had an awesome weekend at my friend’s bachelorette party in Wisconsin — definitely missed having girl time!
And I found a very tasty Minnesota-made blueberry beer.
We’ve definitely been having some fun in between work — pretty much every single weekend since we’ve been back.
Our intention when coming back here was to stay for a while, save up some more money, see our friends and family, and figure out where to go next. It has been so nice being home and being around the people who love us that thinking about leaving again is not easy. In fact, my mind resists it for the most part.
But 11 weeks have gone by, and I feel the travel bug trying to crawl its way out.
I viscerally miss the ocean and mountains, miss them to my core. But after being with our loved ones, I don’t know that I want to be without them all the time just to live in a beautiful place.
A new thought arose that maybe we should live in MN part of the year and live somewhere else for the rest of it. Like snowbirds, but not necessarily leaving the snow.
We can stay close to family and friends while still exploring, traveling, and getting away from the bugs and sometimes terrible weather. But how do we do it? That’s the key we still need to figure out.
We spent a weekend at the cabin. And, though this was mostly to get away and rest, I hoped that it would help my almost incessant need to travel.
But already, I am planning our next adventure. When we were in California, the travel bug was mostly kept at bay because we were having so much fun exploring SoCal that every day felt like an adventure. And that feeling lasted for more than a year before we started to feel antsy again.
Things are a bit different in Minnesota because we grew up here. We feel like we’ve done everything already. So this time around, we decided we wanted it to be different.
We had learned from our past experiences that we needed to balance work and play, because otherwise what is the point? So this time around, we wanted to find more adventures right here in MN.
On the surface, it doesn’t seem like Minnesota has changed much. But it has really stepped up its game in the beer world. Before we left, we weren’t really beer drinkers. After living in Cali, that has changed. And so has our home state. So, Andy decided it was high time we took a brewery tour.
We rounded up the guys, stole my parents’ van, and hit up some breweries in the cities (for those of you outside of MN, the “cities” always refers to Minneapolis and St. Paul).
It was a fun day, and we decided we definitely need to do it again. We may not have an ocean to visit before going to a brewery, but this is the land of 10,000 lakes!
We visited the still-unmatched farmer’s market and stopped by some of our favorite restaurants. Of course, we have to make the rounds!
But even with all of this, I still find myself checking out new travel destinations. Apparently, I don’t do well in a stationary life.
We are planning a few upcoming adventures, and I picked up a guidebook for some hiking inspiration.
We still have our grand plan of hiking the John Muir Trail next summer, and, hopefully, we can get back into shape before then.
In the meantime, we will continue to explore the Midwest, trying to open our eyes to new things and the beauty of this area. And I’m sure I’ll keep dreaming of and planning our next big adventure.
“For my part, I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel’s sake. The great affair is to move.” – Robert Louis Stevenson