Monday Musings: On just dropping by.

Good Monday, all.

I’m just dropping by, since that’s all I seem capable of these days. But these few random musings I felt compelled to share.

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A couple of years ago, I had the good fortune to travel to South Africa, a life-changing experience. I never thought I would go to Africa — I never felt its calling, as some do. That is until I went. South Africa is a fascinating, devastating, infuriating, inspiring country, and I will feel connected to it in my soul for the rest of my days. It’s hard to explain unless — until, I hope — you visit yourself. So, though we knew it was coming, Nelson Mandela’s death last week struck a chord. He was an amazing man who lived an extraordinary life. Continue reading

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Into the universe.

It’s funny. Sometimes when you put your ideas, hopes and dreams into the universe, they come back to you.

I first learned that a few years ago. Just for fun, I wrote a list of all the places I wanted to travel, starting with the ones I’d always thought about, and adding as I saw, read or heard about new destinations. One entry on the list was “Germany and Bavaria.” No sooner had I written it down than my dad called. My stepmother and her business partners were going to a trade show in Frankfurt. Wouldn’t it be fun to meet in Munich, drive down to Salzburg and take the scenic Alpenstrasse back through Bavaria? So we did.

In July, I started officially compiling, and publishing here, my Adventures list. It’s what many people might consider a bucket list of things I’d like to accomplish before I kick it. Mine is so lengthy that I had to divide it into a general adventures list of things to do and see (incorporating my trusty old travels list), a local list of places I want to visit right in my own backyard and my culinary bucket list of foods I can’t wait to eat.

I’m proud to report that in the few short months since publicly declaring these items, I’ve completed several already. Some were intentionally undertaken. Others completely fell in my lap. But that’s the way it happens.

1: “Visit the NASCAR Hall of Fame, Elizabeth Creamery and Olde Mecklenburg Brewery” (from the Playing Tourist list)

There are few things more satisfying to me than crossing something off a list. So imagine my glee at accomplishing three items at once. In October, I took Dad on a long-promised trip to the NASCAR Hall of Fame, with a stop-off at the highly recommended Elizabeth Creamery, and we closed out the day at the Olde Mecklenburg Brewery. You can read all about it here.

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