With Thanksgiving tomorrow, I thought I would write a thank you note from the perspective of a traveler to the things that make these experiences possible.
Dear Mom and Dad, Technology, Reader, and God,
I wanted to take a moment to say thank you for being so awesome. You are all awesome for very different reasons, and I am so thankful that you are all a part of my life.
Mom and Dad (and sister too), y’all have made this entire thing possible. Without y’all’s support, I would not be able to do what I do. I would not possess the courage to get on a plane and head into the deep unknown. Y’all raised me to be independent, strong, and brave. Thank you for continuing to challenge me and push me in the direction I want to go. No, it hasn’t been easy, but we are getting through it. Thank you for letting me to chase my dreams.
Oh technology. Without you I would not be able to fully document my experiences. True I would have a hand written journal full of ticket stubs and business cards and doodles and random thoughts, but pictures and videos allow me to capture the moment. They allow me to pause a moment in time and hold onto it forever. I can forever carry precious smiles and tears not only in my heart but also in my wallet. Further, I can share special moments with the masses almost immediately. My phone allows me to FaceTime with my family. I can take part in birthday parties and Christmases from afar. This blog lets me tell my stories with thousands of people. That’s incredible. Technology you keep me in touch with friends and family and people I hope to meet one day. I cannot thank you enough.
My readers are the reason I write. Thank you, Readers, for pushing me to keep a sense of regular posting on my blog. Thank you for reading my column. Thank you for your incredibly kind words in comments and sharing your stories with me. Those of you who travel and are expats know just how difficult this life can be. Your words of support and wisdom from your own experiences helped me to understand that I am not alone in this struggle. I am thankful for each and every one of you, and if our paths ever cross, I want to buy you a coffee or a pint as a thank you for your continued kindness.
And finally, I want to thank God for creating such an incredible world. From the highest reaches of the Himalaya Mountains to the deepest pit in Marianna’s Trench, this world is beautiful. Everything fits so perfectly together. No, we humans may not always get along nor do we always take the time to marvel at your creation, but please know that I am so thankful for everything on this earth. I have been blessed to see some of the most fantastic sites on earth, and I have not even come close to seeing them all. The world you created for us to live in is perfect. It is good. Thank you for creating it.
There are so many more things I am thankful for as a traveler. I’m thankful for sunrises and sunsets, as they are the beginning and end of days. I’m thankful for languages, the ones I understand and the ones I don’t. I’m thankful for the ability to cry when I need to and laugh away tears. I’m thankful for books to keep my occupied on long plane flights and for having the perfect deck of cards. I’m thankful for friends I make on the road. They are the perfect company and we make the best memories together. We may never, and probably never will, see each other again, but I am thankful for the time we spend together. I’m thankful for human kindness, the ability to show hospitality to strangers, and those that have sheltered me in times of trouble.
I’m thankful for this life I live.
Thank you all for your support in my journey around the world.
All the greatest love in my heart,
Joshua 1:9 – Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.