Meander reboot, y’all. See ya in August!

Meander through Joshua Tree National ParkGreetings from Joshua Tree National Park! I’m on the road again and won’t be back until sometime in August or beyond.

Didn’t expect to hear that. Did you?

Honestly, I didn’t expect to say it. When I woke up last Friday, I thought I had three weeks to kill before flying off to Seattle. But when I unexpectedly closed out my second contract in as many days, it was time to hit the road.

It’s been quite a journey to my second meander.

The seed was planted in March while exploring Walnut Canyon NM in Flagstaff. I waffled as I waited for word on a killer temp gig with Nomadic Agency. When the gig fell through, I began planning a second meander … until changing my mind a few days later.

I’m glad I did.

A trip to Las Vegas and Havasu Falls rekindled my spirit of adventure. And three days at Firefly Gathering let me live again without a smartphone or watch while working through some of the fear that made me cancel my plans in April.

Still, I intended to play out the summer as planned – flying to Seattle on July 11, spending three weeks in the PNW, and returning to the desert in time for Camp Tontozona. Then, on Thursday, I finished a big Infusionsoft project. On Friday, my second biggest client put our contract on hold.

My heart immediately jumped to the road. And my body was just four days behind it.

Meander reboot, y’all. See ya in August!

Silvia's Wash at Joshua Tree

My bodhi tree may be a coastal redwood, but this palo verde at Silvia’s Wash wasn’t bad either.


Departing May 8 in the footsteps of Chris McCandless

salvation mountain

Salvation Mountain: A highlight of the Chris McCandless Tour.

My departure date is set! The Meander commences on May 7. (What’s the Meander?)

People have asked why I’m waiting until May. First, there’s nowhere in the U.S. I’d rather spend springtime than Arizona. Second, my Tempe Leadership commitment doesn’t end until graduation on May 3. So there you have it.

Brothers Birthweek is jumping up a notch in 2013. (Here are pics from Brothers Birthweek 2012.)

On May 7, we’re seeing Built to Spill at Crescent Ballroom. On May 8, we’re embarking on the first leg of my trip: The Chris McCandless Tour. We’ll explore the deserts of Southern California for three days before I put him on a flight back to Phoenix in San Diego.

I know. Chris who? Chris McCandless (a.k.a. Alexander Supertramp) is the foolish adventurer who donated $25,000 to charity, cut off ties with his family and friends, and wandered the West until he starved to death in an abandoned bus near Denali National Park in Alaska.

McCandless’s story was popularized by Jon Krakauer’s book Into the Wild and Sean Penn’s movie of the same name. Eddie Vedder’s song below is just dope on a rope.

Into the Wild-themed stops will include the Salton Sea, Salvation Mountain, and Slab City. We’ll also explore Joshua Tree National Park and I may try to drag my brother through the General Patton Memorial Museum.

McCandless, the Into the Wild character, not the man himself, is one of several inspirations for the Meander. To me, his journey was a protest against materialism and an attempt to live one day at a time—to live in the now. Of course, he was also an extremist and isolationist. Trust me, I don’t plan to go off the grid. I doubt McCandless would’ve started a blog.

I’m inspired by the concept of McCandless’s journey as one of exploration and discovery – both external and internal. May 8 can’t get here soon enough!

My itinerary is very fluid. Know a can’t-miss spot? Got a friend with a couch? Let me know in the comments!