I love traveling. I’m not talking about the travel where you get on an airplane and land at a vacation destination. I speak of iconic traveling salesmen, the road warrior. Where its just you, your material, and your vehicle.
This love for traveling began when I was 13. That summer my father decided to include me in his travel plans. He was a sub-contractor for Southern California 7-11 convenience stores and during the summer he would visit stores to asses and repair them. The summer I accompanied him we traveled all along the 101/405 Freeways. For those of you outside of SoCal it was cities like Hollywood, Oxnard, Ventura, Santa Barabara, and Lompoc.
Being on the road, I gained an appreciation for the freedom associated with driving. I truly enjoyed the road, traffic and all. I especially loved moving from location to location; It fed my nomadic genes.
That summer it was just my dad and I, his company truck, his work material, and our suitcases. We would be away 2-3 weeks at a time. As the copilot, I was incharge of the Thomas Guide. Sitting in the passenger with two different editions, I was the human GPS. Constantly flipping through pages searching for the best route to our next destination. If there was a detour, I was the one ‘recalculating,’ searching through the street index trying to find E7 on page 86. At the end of the summer I was an expert on the Thomas Guide. Traveling now, I miss the process it took to find your destination and map your own route.
Moving from city to city, interacting with new people everyday, staying in hotels, and eating at distinct local restaurants. That summer was amazing! Reflecting on it, that summer had major implications on my life choices. During my college search, I was facinated with Cartography (Study and practice of making maps) and looked for universities that offered it. I ended up as a History in which cartography is interwoven.
Since that summer, I’ve taken position that feed my need to travel and be nomadic. After graduating college, I took a position as a travel leadership consultant for my international fraternity. In 13 months, I traveled 30,000 miles, visited 22 states, and over 60 colleges and university. Just me, my material, my suitcase, and my truck. I enjoyed the emptiness of Nebraska, humidity of Georgia, and bright lights of New York. Each destination was different from the last. Being on the road fulfilled me. It gave me a sense of peace.
Now being in Admissions, I get to enjoy the travel associated with the position. I’m back on the road, doing what I enjoy the most. Just me, my truck, and my materials.