August 2, 2011
It starts with a notion..
The idea to leave my corporate design job in Manhattan and travel around taking photos and enjoying the outdoors crept into my presleep thoughts sometime in the in early spring. Like a virus, this notion spread from daydreams to late night conversations with a few close friends. I missed the outdoors and a sense of exploration. Leaving a comfortable life in search of something different seemed crazy, but the more I thought it the more I realized it was the right decision.
At first, it seemed like a distant dream, years off perhaps. Much to my surprise, steps started falling into place. I signed a book deal with !t Books (a department of Harper Collins) for the Burning House and shot a commissioned project with The Anthropologist. These projects gave me both the money to finance my trip and the purpose to stay productive while traveling. Eager to put my money where my mouth is, I bought a VW Syncro and made preparations. LL Bean agreed to outfit me with the necessary camping and fly fishing equipment and I was off running.
“You’re going to do what? Have you thought this through? What about your job?”
Next came a series of conversations with friends, family and my coworkers. The responses were polarized, but by this point, my mind was made up. If I didn’t take a leap like this now, I probably never would.
“I want to see how far down the hole the rabbit goes.”
In July, I started condensing my things down. I gave bags of clothes to my cleaning lady to send back to her family in Trinidad and Tobago, sold odds and ends on eBay and gave away the rest to friends. It was easier than I thought and more liberating than I could have imagined.
As the dust settled, I packed my possessions into a handful of dry bags and my GR1 and wrapped up my surfboard in preparation of catching a a one wa,y flight back to Portland Oregon this Sunday. From there, I will pick up my Syncro, hit the road and open a new chapter of my life.
Here are some more links,