I developed a love of travel early on, when my aunt Chris took me on a two-week road trip around the western U.S. when I was just 8 years old. We visited almost every western state and about a dozen national parks in the process.
Around that same age, I started hitchhiking. I lived in rural northern California with my parents and younger brother about 5 miles from a small town, and the last mile or so was up a dirt road. The school bus dropped us off at the beginning of that dirt road, and we were on our own to make it the rest of the way to our big cabin in the woods. At some point, I realized that I didn’t have to walk the whole way, if I just made an effort to flag down a neighbor’s car and thus save my short little legs from doing all the work.
When I was 18 I took the hitchhiking spirit halfway around the world, flying to London, England for a summer in Europe. I hitchhiked the entire length of the U.K., from Land’s End at the southwestern tip of England to John ‘o’ Groats at the top of Scotland; and then hopped over to Ireland. I spent the rest of the summer taking trains around mainland Europe, and visited 10 countries in all.
I returned to the U.S., went to university in Alaska for two years, then moved to Oregon intending to continue my college education there. However, due to a series of unexpected and perplexing experiences coupled with my own restless spirit, I ended up embarking on another hitchhiking quest in the fall of 1994…that would continue for six years. It culminated with another journey abroad, this time to India for five months.
I recount many of these events in two of my books, Kundalini and the Art of Being (Station Hill Press, 2008); and Following My Thumb: A Decade of Unabashed Wanderlust (Soul Rocks Books, 2012), both of which are available on Amazon.com.
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Following My Thumb
After taking a break from traveling in the early 2000s to complete my college education, my wanderlust spirit took hold yet again and I embarked on another trip to India in the winter of 2006. And I’ve spent some portion of every year since then abroad, visiting Thailand, Nepal, Greece, Egypt, Turkey, the Philippines, Malaysia, Singapore, China and three more visits to India. Search around the site for more info about my travels, photography and writings.
Click the “Following My Thumb” tab at the top of this page for some short excerpts from Following My Thumb.
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