A journey of 1000 miles …
I’m not content to just sit back and enjoy my surroundings, I need to seek out the world around me. Don’t get me wrong, I have come to love and appreciate the things the great state of Oklahoma has to offer. However, that is only because I have gone looking.
About 10 years ago I was riding in a car with a friend seeking out what was then a newly created game called geocaching. Mike, or as we called him, OKDoke, told me about how he had visited all of the 50 states. I thought to myself I’d like to do that too. Heck I already had a lot of them, how hard could it be? Hell I even had one of the hard ones completed on my honeymoon in Kauai, HI.
Well it’s a lot harder than you think, but that didn’t stop me from setting the goal and going for it. If there is anything that gets me going it’s a challenge to complete some crazy goal. Like finding a geocache in every Delorme map grid across the state of Oklahoma, which I finished with a couple of other friends named Eric and Jeff. Or the time Eric and I drove all day to get to the panhandle so we could visit the highest point in the state, well that and claim a geocache as well. I kind of moved on from Geocaching several years ago but my love for exploring has not moved on.
Track back again to 2004 a couple of years after that discussion with Mike about all 50 states. I decided to quit a job I really liked and enjoyed that let me travel all over the state of Oklahoma. It was time to settle down for an office job that paid more and allowed me a better life and more comfort for my family. In other words, it paid more. My new boss also promised that there would be a little bit of travel involved which was also right up my alley. Before I even started the job my new boss called and stated that the “little bit of travel” might turn into “a LOT of travel”. He said he would understand if I wanted to back out of the job offer. It sounded like a challenge to me, so I began that first step. Little did I know at that time but my “journey of 100o miles” was about to become a reality.
I started the job on a Monday and by Wednesday found myself getting on a plane bound for Green Bay, WI. A new state! A few weeks later Billings, MT. I was close to getting 30 states before I knew it, then 40. Next thing you know it’s 7 years later and I close out states #47 and #48 with the knowledge that this is going to become a reality.
I think over the next few weeks I’ll write something up about each state. I’m not too sure very many people will ever even read this but that doesn’t really matter. What matters is that I think it will be nice to reflect back on why each and every state no matter how small or large has become a part of my life, a piece of my memory. I want to remember the last “960″ miles I’ve walked so that the next 40 miles will be that much sweeter.