My philosophy on traveling has always been go big or go home. I’ve constantly yearned to visit far-off places with foreign languages and exciting sights. International travel was my do-or-die. Since becoming employed full-time a little over a year ago after graduating from college, I realized that extensive international travel might not be as possible as I had hoped it would be after school.
Flash forward to almost three months ago - I packed up my bags and moved to the outskirts of Cincinnati, Ohio not knowing a soul but my boyfriend, Michael, and some of his friends. I knew that moving out of my hometown and out on my own would put even more of a hindrance on my ability to travel – Cincinnati is much more expensive than my little bitty hometown in rural Kentucky. I also knew that I didn’t want to give up traveling, not one bit.
So what's a girl who is meant to wander to do about not being able to travel to the fullest of her longing? I have searched and searched for the answer to this question for over a year and not until last weekend did I find an answer.
Last Sunday, Michael and I took our pup, Augusta, on a hike at a state park in western Ohio that was about thirty minutes from where we live. We weren’t expecting much from the park, just some hiking trails and maybe a place to kayak. We were blown away by the abundance of activities that were available in its over 4,000 acre area. There was so much to explore, to see, to do, that we didn’t know exactly what we wanted to accomplish. We ended up hiking about three miles – we got completely lost and my Fitbit loved it! – and had a fantastic time. We are definitely planning to come back and take advantage of its paddle boats, kayaks, biking trails, and golf course very soon! Upon discovering this seemingly normal state park, we realized it curbed our appetite for travel. We saw unique sights, had good company, and had a new adventure.
Travel is essentially going somewhere – where you may or may not have already traveled – and exploring something new, something interesting, & finding a little bit of yourself. This is precisely what we did at this Ohio state park. You don’t necessarily need fancy destinations and eight-hour flights to satisfy your wanderlust craving. All you need is an unknown destination that might be a mile from your house… or a thousand.
With this realization, together we made a promise to travel locally more often. There is so much to discover in our new home region and we have an endless amount of time to see it all. This isn’t to say that we don’t want to leave home – we’re currently planning a week-long trip to Scotland – but just that we want to see more of our local area to satiate our travel bug until we can go on our next grand adventure.
With that being said, through Mad's Muses I hope to connect with all types of travelers - international, domestic, beginner, experienced - so I've decided to start writing about my not-so-huge adventures, too. Be prepared to see local gems thrown in the mix with international journeys. So if you’re wanting to travel know that it doesn’t have to be expensive or fancy or distant, it just needs to be innovative and fresh and exciting.
“Certainly, travel is more than the seeing of sights; it is a change that goes on, deep and permanent, in the ideas of living.” – Miriam Beard
Hi, I'm Madeline
Blogger, teacher, writer, traveler, reader. Welcome to Mad's Muses!
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