It was just last week that I posted a tentative travel plan for my summer travels, and in today’s post I’m going to do something totally bizarre and throw them all out and start over from scratch!! As a nomad all my plans are written in Jello, and this Cherry Jello rolled over on my plate! What!! Why would I do such a crazy thing?!
Very simple, the first line of this quote from Elizabeth Kubler-Ross popped into my head, and it would not let go:
“It is very important that you only do what you love to do. You may be poor, you may go hungry, you may lose your car, you may have to move into a shabby place to live, but you will totally live.
And at the end of your days you will bless your life because you have done what you came here to do.
Otherwise, you will live your life as a prostitute, you will do things only for a reason, to please other people, and you will never have lived. And you will not have a pleasant death.” ~~Elizabeth Kubler-Ross
There is no one I admire more than I admire Elizabeth Kubler-Ross and this simple quote summarizes everything I believe about living a good life which can be summarized in that one sentence, “Only do the things you love to do.” Those summer plans meant I was not going to do what I love to do.
So many people live their life for their old age and therefore they do almost nothing that they love. They only do whatever society tells them to do to have a few “golden years” at the end of their life. Then on their deathbed, they look back with deep regrets, that they did so little that they actually loved. They do not have a pleasant death.
For a long time I lived that way too, but all it did was make me very sad and lonely. Today, I live my life totally differently, I live for my last few days and moments before my death at the end of my life. When my life flashes before my eyes I want it to be full to the brim with memories of doing the many things that I love, and as few as possible of doing the things I hated doing.
When I wrote that post I was in Cottonwood, and camping with some of my favorite people and shooting videos. I was tremendously enjoying myself and big part of me wanted to stay and keep doing the same thing because I was having so much fun.
But my summer travel plans had been published and were already set in motion so I just let momentum move me forward and I reluctantly said goodbye and headed out.
My first stop was back in Pahrump to take care of a van project and hang with a few other friends. When that was over I was headed to Lone Pine CA to drive up 395, which I consider to be one of the most beautiful drives in America—it had been a long time since I drove it so it was a top priority.
As I thought about my plans for May, driving the Oregon and Washington coast, I realized I was not looking forward to it, instead, I was dreading it! I am NOT a water guy; the oceans have no call on me whatsoever! In fact the more I thought about the drive up the California, Oregon and Washington coasts, the more I realized I hated the idea!! I HATE THAT KIND OF TRAFFIC and to endure it for something I didn’t even want to see made no sense!!
So I got to wondering to myself, “If you don’t want to go, and in fact you dread going, why in the world are you going?!!” You know what the answer was that came to me? I was going because it was expected of me! Everybody else loves the coasts, especially the Oregon coast, so I was going just so I could tell them I had been there and loved it!
That’s when the wisdom of Elizabeth Kubler-Ross popped into my head and I remembered I had dedicated my life to living to follow my dreams and happiness no matter what the herd told me to do—and here I was doing something for no other reason than the herd told me to do it.
If I was going to live like I only did the things I loved to do, I would skip the Oregon coast and all my summer plans and head back to Cottonwood/Flagstaff and hang with my friends, so that’s what I’m going to do! I will go over to Lone Pine because I’m so close and I do love it, but then it will be back over to hang with my friends.
Part of the reason is the last two summers were very high travel years. In 2014 Judy and I went to Alaska and 2015 was all over Wyoming. Next summer, 2017, is also going to be a major travel year as I plan to go to Alaska again (in June of 2017 I’ll start drawing Social Security so I’ll have the money). As much as I loved both summers of travel, a third one in a row just is not sitting well with me, I want the time off.
No, this year was going to be a social summer.
So the reason I’m posting this now is so you will know not to look for me along the route I published earlier and also start to plan to join me in my Arizona camp and at the Summer RTR (yes, that’s right, taking the summer off from travel means there can be a summer RTR).
Until it gets too hot I’ll be moving between Cottonwood and Sedona, AZ, then when it gets too hot I’ll move up to the area around Williams and Flagstaff, AZ. My camp is always welcome to you and so I hope you will feel free to drop by. My tentative dates for a Summer RTR are for June 16th to June 26th, 2016 near to Flagstaff, AZ. Here is some information about where we will be camped:
- It will be free dispersed camping in a beautiful forested National Forest.
- The weather is generally very good then, not hot or cold.
- Camp is easy to find, we’ll only be a few miles off I-40 .
- Because we are so close to the freeway, we’ll have a very good Verizon Internet and phone signal.
- The roads are good, any size rig can make it.
- There are lots of campsites, but we may be scattered a little bit.
- That time of the year it’s likely there will be a fire/burn ban in effect—bring a propane stove.
- Flagstaff will only be a few miles away and is a large town, they will have whatever you might need.
- The Grand Canyon is about 80 miles away and Sedona is about 50 miles away (and incredibly beautiful).
As the time gets closer I’ll publish a map to my blog. If you want to get there early and stay later, you will be welcome to do so, I’ll be camping in the area anyway and you can camp with me before and after. Sometime in July I’ll leave AZ and go into Colorado and Wyoming to chase wildflowers. I can’t let a summer pass without getting a fix of wildflowers and mountains! Even in a social summer, I gotta have them!