You’re probably wondering if I’ve used up my allotment of freaky self-portraits for these State of the Savage posts yet. I’m getting there, not to worry. Luckily (for me, not you), I’ll be back in Scotland shortly where I’m sure to replenish this stock.
It’s been an interesting six months at home between trips. Sure, I’ve had mini-vacations to Florida and excursions to San Francisco, Milwaukee, and Chicago, but generally I’ve been waking up at home and lurching into my office with coffee. It’s a nice life. It’d be even nicer if I was making a livable income.
There have been frequent periods of thrashing for new ideas during these home-bound months. I detest the thoughts that sometimes assail me, of being a malingerer or carpetbagger while Sarah brings home the bacon. The full-time pursuit of creative endeavors is a rare luxury, even if it is a struggle, and I suppose it should come as no surprise that it’s difficult to reconcile these low points with modern expectations of work and income that are institutionalized in us from birth (not to mention Catholic guilt, oh boy).
I am a kid at heart. In his best man’s speech at my wedding, my brother summed me up as a “dreamer” and the older I get the more I see the accuracy and wisdom in that assessment. I have so many dreams that live on into the conscious world as ideas and pursuits, but like dreams these pursuits rarely live through to the next night. Sometimes it feels like chasing ghosts and I wonder.
Starting April 1 I’m beginning a new phase in a new project. It won’t have any immediate effect on Traveling Savage; in fact, I’ve been working on it for the past three months. I think it’s in good enough shape to move on to the meat of the project. As much as I’m a kid at heart and a dreamer, I’m also a brutal pragmatist (incidentally, having these two opposing character traits often leads one to hang suspended between the two, dreaming up ideas only to shoot them down, and ultimately results in zero progress in any direction). I hate being such a tease, but I’ll have more information on the project in the future.
Plans & Happenings
A month from now I’ll be haunting Edinburgh’s misty closes, wind-swept hills, and traditional pubs with my dad. Then we proceed north with clusters of days in Perthshire, Speyside for the Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival, Tain and Easter Ross, and Orkney. I’m working on my content strategy for this trip; the first couple trips to Scotland last year I continued with standard posts while I was traveling, but on my trip last September I chose to write only vignettes. I like for there to be some indication to readers of Traveling Savage that I’m actually in Scotland traveling, but I need to refine this idea. I will certainly use Facebook’s Notes app on the Traveling Savage fan page to provide timely recaps of the Spirit of Speyside whisky festival – kind of like a microblog – so if you’re not a fan now I highly recommend you Like my page.
As I mentioned last month, I’ve decided to skip the Travel Blog Exchange (TBEX) 2012 conference in Keystone, Colorado. Travel blogger readers: I have a ticket for sale at pre-sale face value. Contact me if you’re interested. Instead, that weekend I’ll be heading to Montreal to see a Radiohead concert with my amazing wife, Sarah. Quick aside: Radiohead actually brought us together back in the summer of 2003 at a concert we attended at Alpine Valley, and Montreal is where I proposed to her five and a half years ago. It’s going to be incredible!
Other non-work-related trips this year include weddings in San Francisco and Spokane and a visit to Memphis in autumn.
Being a dreamer is a gift and a curse. It makes holding down a steady, if uninspiring and unfulfilling, job extremely difficult, but I imagine actualizing dreams to be among the highest highs. Are you a dreamer? Can you relate?