Growing up, my family’s main vacation time each year was a two week stretch in the summer. Each summer, all five of us would load up and drive across the country from Tennessee to see what we could discover.
But we rarely left the pavement.
Whether it was a National Park, National Monument, theme park, state park. Pretty much any destination had us cruising along on asphalt.
Paved roads are faster. They are straighter. No dust. No rocks. And overall a pretty smooth ride.
But since we’ve been living in an RV we’ve ventured outside of what was normal for us in a house. We now look for unpaved roads. Marissa’s comment on our latest video at 8:56 is what sparked this post
We get there. But it’s a bumpy road.
Selling our house (that we loved) with a one year old (who was a handful) to live in an RV (which we had zero experience doing) was not a well traveled road. Our paved road mindset begged us to stay in our lane. Keep our jobs, house, neighborhood, cars, and our room after room of possessions.
But something funny happens when you leave the paved road. You’re forced to slow down. Taste and smell the dirt as it covers your vehicle. See your surroundings as you pass them by at 20mph instead of 70mph. Feel the bumps in the road. You start to embrace what is around you and suddenly what seemed like a race has opened up the reality that it’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey.
We love big cities…for about 4 days. And then we are usually ready to move on. We’ve been to New York, Chicago, DC, Philly and several other large cities across the United States. One common theme in all of them is they can be busy. We’ve been stuck in crowds once its time to head home from work and have felt the wrath of being in someone’s path.
We’ve been stared down. Yelled at. Honked at. One friendly person even waved at me with one finger. Once someone is focused on the paved road, it’s best to step aside and let them speed on by.
RVing has taught us that some of the most exciting parts of life are on a bumpy road. Those not-so-traveled paths that lead us to somewhere other than the well-worn road used by the majority. We’ve fallen in love with boondocking, exploring the outdoors, and meeting new people. None of these are natural worn path we grew up with.
Taking the bumpy road is about changing roads. It’s about driving down one that is busy, worn, faster, easier, and then intentionally yanking the steering wheel to the side for a dirty, bumpy, side road that leads to who-knows-where.
Every day we’re still finding out our road can get bumpier. Finding ways to challenge ourselves. Think outside the box. Go against the flow of what’s normal.
We get there, but it’s a bumpy road.
That’s our journey and our challenge with bumpy roads. What challenges do you need to face so you can take the bumpy road?