Having recently returned from a family vacation in Canada, I started thinking about its origin and what it actually ended up being. Many months ago, my oldest son expressed an interest in going to the Firefly Music Festival in Dover, Delaware, which featured a ton of bands over a four-day period. He bemoaned the fact that most of his friends were too married or too broke to commit at that point, and I glibly said, “Well, I’ll go.” And I would. To his credit, he didn’t immediately say, “Seriously?” Given our mutual love of all things Foo Fighters-related (we actually saw the band together for the first time a couple of years ago), we both were pretty excited about the possibility of seeing them again. We each requested the time off from work and said we would order tickets soon—but first we would see if my youngest son wanted to go.
He wasn’t sure. It was a financial commitment he wasn’t ready to make. So we waited, and then we kind of knew the answer, but we waited. As a couple of weeks went by, we kept waiting on getting tickets and for no particular reason. And then I started thinking about it, and wondering, “If I spend the money on a four-day festival and then lodging, food, travel and all, would I rather be spending it on something more?” But I didn’t say anything. I already said I’d go. Meanwhile, we waited and occasionally would mention, “Hey, we better get tickets,” and do nothing.
I started thinking about Canada. More specifically, I started thinking about Prince Edward Island, a place I hadn’t been to since I was a teenager and where my maternal grandparents were from. It’s also the place my mom spent many of her childhood and young adult summers. I kept thinking how amazing it would be to bring her to the island one more time; how excited she’d be. Continue reading “Road-tripping Through the Maritimes”
We pulled into Dallas on Friday afternoon and soon learned who from our organization would also be in town for a special event on Saturday. There’s a real sense of camaraderie when you’re out on the road. Put people who don’t necessarily interact regularly in a new circumstance away from everyone else, and very quickly there’s opportunity to get to know people on a level you might not otherwise.
One of the best things about this journey (beyond the student interaction) is the chance to get to know a lot of different people that I wouldn’t normally be working with or perhaps have reason to connect with. So community is being built internally as well as externally with this initiative—another added benefit of the journey that was not necessarily anticipated.
I have only been to Dallas once before, and really didn’t see much of anything beyond my hotel which was pretty nice and the Dallas markets where I was looking for sales reps. I remember thinking how much I’d love to see it again. And here I am, or I should say. . .there I was.
Continue reading “Feeling the Warmth in a 100-Degree City”
When I joined this cross-country journey about a week or so ago, I envisioned blogging every night about what I experienced each day, just as I often envision getting eight more things done each day than time ever allows. Then reality rears its head and firmly clocks me on mine. There’s nothing wrong with my reach often exceeding my grasp, however. I wouldn’t get to half the things I do if it didn’t.
So here I am, all these days later, with just a single blog post, but the truth is, I’ve been too busy living it to write about it and that’s okay.
We start everything with some preconceived notions, but this was one time that I wasn’t thinking too much about what the experience might hold. I felt I knew one thing only; that the students we would be meeting would be excited about what we are doing. Other than that–I was throwing all caution to the wind and leaving myself open just to experience it.
Continue reading “Heat, Humidity and Cankles”
People fascinate me–they always have. I like hearing their stories, learning about their lives and connecting my own observations to what I’m being told. When I travel, I particularly like to meet people wherever I am, especially if it’s someplace I’m not all that familiar with. It’s always cool to take in the local culture and visits some of the places that aren’t necessarily tourist destinations, although I’m usually down to see the must-go-to spots as well.
With that in mind, after a few hours in Pensacola the other night, I wavered between eating something really quickly and going to bed a bit earlier than usual and seeing a bit of the town. I took a quick cool shower to wake up a bit and decided to see what I could see since I didn’t anticipate getting back to Pensacola any time soon. I threw on a bright summer dress, quickly brushed back my wet hair and tied a scarf around my head before heading out the door. I felt like a bit of a mess, but I didn’t really care. Time was a-wastin’.
Continue reading “A Memorable Few Hours in Pensacola”
Four hours into day four of my leg of SNHU’s #SeeYourselfSucceed cross-country journey and I already feel like I have been with this dedicated group of people for much longer than that. Actually, the last couple of months have had a one-long-day feel to it—mostly because it’s been such an intensive dive into this initiative encompassing so many different components. When I say one long day, I mean that entirely in a positive way.
There’s been a consistent flow to almost every bit of work that I’ve done over the past two months that easily transitions into my time away from work, too. Actually, there’s very little time away from work. I find myself drawn to the social media elements 24/7, wanting to follow up with every comment, every ‘like,’ every share and every question regardless of the time of day/night. It’s fascinating stuff and everyone is working extremely hard at this. As much effort as I’m putting in, there’s many others doing double that and more. This isn’t work—it’s passion for everyone.
Continue reading “On the Road”
I am about to embark on a great adventure—a journey, quite frankly, that could be described as life-altering (and I’m sure it will be described in just those words by me before the journey is over). It’s a trip already in progress, and I will enter into the second third of that journey, one which I’ve had the privilege to document in blog form and social media for the nonprofit university for which I am fortunate to work.
Southern New Hampshire University began a six-week, cross-country trip by bus–a branded SNHU.edu bus–eleven days ago, and has traveled down the east coast, meeting students and alumni, connecting them with advisors and faculty who have impacted them in some significant way, and most all, students are sharing their goals, along with their personal stories and how SNHU somehow fit into each. Every story told to date resonates strongly with me. We hear about the sacrifices made to obtain dreams, not just for or by the student, but his or her family as well; and we hear about what’s next. This is an opportunity to cheer on those still making gains in their degree programs and to applaud those who have completed theirs–and celebrate their success.
Continue reading “Embarking on a Great Adventure”
I saw an unusual sight yesterday. It was someone hitchhiking, a young man maybe in his early 20s, a bit of a mess really, walking along the side of the road, turning when a car came his way, extending his arm and sticking out his thumb. You don’t see that much anymore.
Back when I was a teenager, and probably for as many years prior since types of transportation that allowed more than one person to get a ride came about, thumbing a ride was not an uncommon sight. It was customary to hear tales of people thumbing across country, through Canada, and across Europe, all of which inspired romanticized versions (for me at least) of what those adventures must have been like.
For those without a car, hitchhiking was a way to get around. When I was in my pre-teens and early teens, I rode my bike like other people drove their cars around town. I would ride for hours at a time, and for me, it was sweet freedom. I would ride that bike from one end of town to the next, reveling in my own ability to get somewhere on my own. I couldn’t wait until I could actually drive a car and really go somewhere. But until then, I had my bike, first a Raleigh 3-speed (a very elegant black bike) and then a bright, sky blue 10-speed. I loved both of those bikes, and went everywhere on them. I liked riding my bike so much that once when I rode in a 25-mile bike-a-thon, I rode the course 3 times that day. The people that sponsored me per mile were NOT happy when I came to collect.
Continue reading “Flashback”