Like most folks who are following the guidelines from the CDC, governing bodies, and just about everyone else right now, I'm doing a lot of sitting around at home. Being an introvert, I figured this social distancing thing was going to be a cinch, but it's really not.
To keep myself from spiraling into a funk, thinking about all the things going on in the world right now, I've found that the best thing to do is to stay busy. I work my regular job, surprisingly unchanged from normal, since I work remotely most of the time anyway. But that still leaves me with downtime. Over the last week or so, I've been using every spare minute of my time either out in the garage, 3D printing parts for faceshields to donate to local healthcare facilities, or working on the website I've put together to track all the steps in the production process for the group of volunteers I've been working with.
But somehow, even with all of that, I'm finding myself looking backward a lot. It's an easy thing to do in a time like this. When things seem grim in the real world, we tend to think back to "better times". For me, these times often involve my close friend group. Taking weekend trips out with the guys. Sitting around having a fire in the firepit. Dates I went on with my wife when we were first dating. Things like that.
But one of the biggest things I've found myself looking back on, was not with friends, nor was it with my wife (girlfriend at the time), or anyone else I knew. It was a solo trip I took in the fall of 2018 to Arizona for a few days. I mentioned this in my first post on this blog as well. It was a very significant time for me, being my first time traveling solo, and it pushed me out of my comfort zone almost every step of the way.
I look back on that trip very often, but especially now. As I mentioned in that first post, about a six months or so after the trip, it occurred to me that I should write down all the details of the trip while I could remember them, and so I did. Every name, place, date, and even times when I could remember them. It was mostly for me. A way to dig into the memories of the trip and find all the little details from it. But while writing it, I also had in the back of my mind the entire time, that perhaps one day I'd share it with others.
I've been going back through those writings, and editing them to be published on this blog. The tale is broken up into parts, one for each day of the trip, complete with pictures. I plan to post them here in the same way, one at a time until they are done.
So, if you're interested in reading a very long-winded account of my journey to "find myself" in Arizona, stay tuned.
Read part 0 here.