The trailer for Season 9 of Roadtrip Nation looks great.
I was in New York City with a few friends, last week, exploring as much as we could. From Chinatown to the Village, from Brooklyn to the Lower East Side, we tried to fit as much as possible in 3 days. Because we were trying to cram as much as we could in 3 days, there were times when I was just physically exhausted and didn’t want to keep going. Yet, their enthusiasm and the prospect of a good time and experience kept me going…and going…and going.
Here were some of my goals for the weekend:
- See the Brooklyn Bridge
- Eat good food (include plantains if possible)
- Go to a modern art museum and see an exhibition that makes the hair on the back of my head stand up
- Go to a spoken word/music event
We ended up doing it all and more, and meeting a few people along the way.
The day I got back from my trip, I read the post on Joel Runyon’s Blog of Impossible Things on how to make better choices. His main point was to say yes more often, yes to impromptu adventures and yes to seeking out more impromptu adventures. For a highly impulsive person like me, it’s easy to see it as, “don’t plan, just do”. However, as I read more closely, I realized what he was saying was more along the lines of “Plan…then leave room for adventure”.
Now, that my trip is over, I’m trying to see how this would work in my daily life. How do I take more adventures? How do I make more space to recognize and to say yes to the better choice, the better story, the impromptu adventure?
I think Google should add a third button under its search bar. It would read: Google Search, I’m Feeling Lucky and I’m Feeling Generous. The I’m Feeling Generous button would be linked to sites like Kiva.org and Kickstarter so that, on days when you’re feeling down or you start to lose trust in the human race, you can click on it and help someone get a tiny bit closer to their dream. Because it is true what they say: There are more blessings in giving than in receiving.
Kickstarter is an online platform that allows creatives to crowdfund their projects. In other words, they invite others to be a part of their work by trading “a piece of the real estate” for financial support. You can check out projects by Location, Category or by Popularity. We love Kickstarter because as Yann Martel mentions in his foreword of Life of Pi: “If we, citizens, do not support our artists, then we sacrifice our imagination on the altar of crude reality and we end up believing in nothing and having worthless dreams”. Here are a few projects that’s caught our eye recently.
1. I grew up on series like Asterix and Obelix and the Adventures of Tintin. So, when I came across Penny and Bobby, it didn’t take long to convince me. I found myself getting excited like I did years ago, when I got ahold of my first animated book series. Plus, you’re never too old to enjoy mythological adventures. No, you can’t convince me otherwise.
2. What determines success or failure on the road to Change? This documentary asks this very question. I don’t know about you, but I’m curious of the answer…or answers. There are only 11 days to go!
3. Another project about lighting a fire under your behind. Anyone else can relate to the whole “quiet desperation” thing? Did I really catch a glimpse of Danielle Laporte in that trailer? Chris Guillebeau? I want to see this in a movie theater! Only 5 dollars and you get a digital download. Say whaaa?
4. A guide to Multicultural London. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t curious. Wanderlust, take me away! 19 days to go on this one.
5. Bonus! This project is all funded, but I thought it’s worth mentioning anyway. When Christina Mercado couldn’t find a job after grad school, she turned lemons into lemonade by writing an adult “children’s” book about the process of finding a job. I want a copy!
I’ve got itchy feet…I mean, wanderlust. The kind of fever that seizes a frequent traveler, or one bitten by the travel bug. I’ve been talking about wanting to go to India for a while. Fine, since Slumdog Millionaire came out. Cliché, I know. All I know is that I’ve got India Fever, a yearning for a land I know almost nothing about it. Knowing nothing in the age of Information is no excuse, really.
“I wanna go to India!”.
“Oh, what part of India?”
Shrug. “I don’t know. I just wanna go to Indiaaa!!!”
It’s at this point that my Indian friends stop talking to me. It’s the same as someone wanting to go to Italy or Bali after having read “Eat, Pray, Love”. Or wanting to go to Africa after having read Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart…which seems to be the only book by an African author read in American classrooms. “Which country in Africa do you want to visit?” “Wait…Africa’s not a country?” Thankfully, I almost never hear this question anymore, unless it’s friends who are more than willing to push my buttons, once in a while. So, I understand why they roll their eyes when I start talking about India.
I’m in the first few pages of Life of Pi and so far, I’m intrigued. Who is this young man who decided to study sloths at university? Why does a remark like “fresh off the boat” cut him so deep that he loses his appetite? What happened to him that was so tragic that cancer patients felt sorry for him? The narrative is light so far, but I can’t help but feel that something dark is around the corner. It’s the same feeling you get, standing in front of a murky body of water, while someone waves at you to dive in. “Come in, the water’s great”. Yet, you don’t dare jump in. What lies under the murkiness?
I sense some murkiness under the surface. So far, so good. I’m intrigued enough to post on my Indian friends’ Facebook wall: “Is it Bombay or Mumbai?”