Almost two years ago, I published a blog entry from the lobby of the Grand Teton Lodge in anticipation of an expected lack of access to wifi in those upcoming days. The intention was to navigate the availability for wifi and update as time went on. During the week spent traveling between Grand Teton National Park and Yellowstone National Park, the opportunities to be connected to the internet were nearly nonexistent. This continued throughout my drive home in the Badlands and beyond. The wilderness is not a place for digital connectivity. (I am most thankful for this quality.) I assumed at the time that I would eventually share my experiences during that time. Sadly, it never happened. Time can get away from all of us.

In all of my years of traveling, I have learned that the most special moments are those that you do not anticipate. Many of these often exist outside of one’s sphere of possibility. The unexpected experiences can show us the beauty of the world, teach us lessons that can offer insight and connection, and gift us with the perspective of how small we are in such a grand universe.

Beauty. Insight. Perspective.

During those few weeks two years ago, my travels offered these realizations:

Looking back over your shoulder for no apparent reason can be memorable.

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Weeds are beautiful.

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When looking down, sometimes you will see something looking back at you.

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When a bald eagle is flying overhead and you don’t have your camera out, just enjoy the moment. You can always take a photograph later and know that these two moments are connected.

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Sometimes that light rustling sound is not the wind.

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Life can be found in seemingly inhospitable environments.

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Jagged edges can appear soft.

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The sun is life giving.

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Roadblocks are not always manmade.

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One bend of the road can take your breath away.

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Looking back over your shoulder for no apparent reason can be memorable.

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As much as travel can be planned, its purest moments are those that are unplanned.
There is such beauty in that realization.
Traveling as an essential experience.
New places provide new perspectives.

Expect the unexpected.
Appreciate the unexpected.
Be the unexpected.

11 thoughts

  1. Beautiful pictures and words.
    Surrender, let go, have faith and expect the unexpected. Exactly what 2019 is teaching me. Looking forward to following your journey.

    Sue Miller (Romer)

  2. Great words and photos Greg! Thought of you often on our latest adventures in California. As a family we found just what you said. The best days were not the ones that were super planned out. They were the ones that you let happen. Hope you are having some great travels!

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