Earlier this week we left LA and kicked off our wanderings up the Pacific Coast Highway. (We’ll end up in Vancouver, B.C., so please shout out any recommendations you might have!)
To date, we have one very serious complaint:
Despite checking at least three gas stations and one gift shop, we’ve found no Twizzlers, only Red Vines. (We also came across a gas station with a $5 a gallon price tag, so perhaps we have two complaints. But that’s it!)
To quote AJ, the retired police officer who was our neighbor at a campsite in Morro Bay, “it’s pretty bitchin’ just to be here.” And, it’s true. Just like us, AJ has “itchy feet” and a wandering soul. But, there’s something about the Central Coast that has kept AJ happy, despite his long travel bucket list.
We took AJ’s advice and spent a day near McWay Falls in Big Sur. This 80-foot-tall waterfall is about 40 miles south of Carmel. Take a look at organizations like the Big Sur Land Trust to learn more about the unique challenges facing the coast.
Big Sur, McWay Falls, CA. May 2018.
Justin isn’t the type to make New Year resolutions. But, when January rolled around this year, he decided to give it a go. The goal he set was to take one portrait, of one stranger, a week.
So far, we’ve stuck to the goal - pushing ourselves to engage in conversations, to listen to strangers, and to learn about the unique patches of culture and communities that make up this big ‘ol country of ours.
We’ll spare you the cliches around how every stranger is just a friend you haven’t met yet - that just isn’t true. But, through our travels, we have found that with respect and an open mind, a connection can be made with just about anyone.
Not each portrait comes with a story, nor does each story come with a portrait - but each picture we take brings us a new appreciation for the stories, viewpoints, and individuals we see.
Pittsburgh, PA. May 2018.
The world needs more people like Shana. She lives her life with an unwavering commitment to feminism, farmers’ markets, and almond milk lattes. Shana’s work in the nonprofit sector is rooted in building a more just society. An advocate for LGBTQ equality in her professional and personal life, Shana shows up with her full self.
As Shana marked another year around the sun, she asked us to think deeper:
What have you learned this year?
What will you change for next year?
What are you most looking forward to in the coming year?
Ed is 83 and still riding his motorcycle through the High Desert of California. He landed in the town of Twentynine Palms, just north of Joshua Tree National Park, in the early 1960’s. Every day for the past 34 odd years he’s started his day at The Jelly Donut, a local coffee shop.
(When we met Ed we were purchasing our own pre-hike baked goods; an apple fritter can do wonders for fueling a several mile desert hike.)
Ed has seen the town change over the years; some changes he’s been alright with, but he shook his head at many of them. For instance, he isn’t too keen on the buses of folks from the San Bernardino prison system who are often relocated to the area after their release. And, the economy has shifted as well, according to Ed, back in the day there was a “lady’s dress shop,” a Sears, as well as a slew of other large shops to meet your needs.
Although, as Ed was quick to mention, you can get anything you need in Twentynine Palms - “a massage, a pizza, a tattoo …. or a massage, a pizza, or a tattoo.”
A Tendency to Wander protip: when locked out of your vehicle, a shoelace and a slipknot can do wonders.
Valley Spring, Texas. May 2018.