BBQ, Grits and Selling the Farm
Don't ask me why I came up with this title. If you want some kind of connection, then the closest thing is probably that they all have roots in the south. And as much as I like all of these things as a 27-year old "southern good 'ole boy", I'm feeling the tug for a change. BBQ, grits and farm life have all been somewhat of an identity for me. I actually spent most of my days as a child on a farm. And you've heard the phrase "never pee on an electric fence"? Well from personal experience, I recommend you heed the warning. Living in both South Carolina and North Carolina, there are typically 5 food groups: sweets, beef, light beer, BBQ pork and grits. I can't tell you how many times even lately that I've talked to fellow travelers that have wanted to come to the Carolinas just for it's renowned BBQ and shrimp and grits.
Despite these things that make the south as it is, there's much that I've grown weary of. Lately, I've become increasingly disenchanted with living in the south. So much so that over the last week I've had a stronger than ever desire to "sell the farm". I get in this mindset every year or so where I'm ready to pack up and travel the world or become an expat. The first time was a few years ago when I lived in South Africa for a summer. The group of 25 college students I was with were excited to be leaving for hair appointments and driving on the right side of the road, while I already had my African bungalow picked out.
This last bout of Sell the Farmism came about three months ago when I had made some extremely poor decisions that consequently led to my wife and I getting a divorce. It was then that I really wanted to run away, but I knew that letting my emotions take control was no way to go about it. I committed to staying near where I was for at least 3 months (I moved an hour away). Well after talking to some good travel friends this week, some of which are expats, and getting ready for the 2010 Travel Blog Exchange (TBEX) in NYC next week, those desires to travel the world or live as an expat have come back stronger than ever.
A couple days ago I wrote a blog post called: What Are You Waiting For. In it, I talk about people getting to a point where they yield to their yearnings and do what they've wanted and dreamed. I would much rather experience the short-term consequences and long-term satisfaction of chasing my passions than laying on my death bed wondering what could've been if I had. And though I haven't made the dive into the great unknown and "sold the farm", I've made the decision that I'm going to.
So what does this mean for me? I don't know. It's progress that I'm making steps in the right direction. This go round is a little different than past times when I've had this strong urge to go. For example, I actually looked at apartments in Latin America recently, which I've never done before. I also stopped recently though and looked at a motorhome that was for sale. Am I going to become a full-time location independent travel writer? I'd like to say that I am, but I can't answer that. All I can do is wake up tomorrow and see what the day has for me and then do the same thing on Monday and so on.
So am I crazy? Maybe you have a story you'd like to share about a time you've sold the farm and it resulted either in some tough consequences or life-altering rewards. And maybe you're experiencing some of the same feelings. I would love for your comments and stories, so that I can learn from you and just maybe you might learn something from me.