Travel Butterflies In Action

“A mind that is stretched by a new experience can never go back to its old dimensions.” (Oliver Wendell Holmes)


Early retirement at sixty three seemed to be going well for John these days. He enjoyed living comfortably, day by day, with his lovable wife, Rita at their Miami beachfront condo along the the Atlantic shoreline. Yet except for casual dining with family/friends, store shopping for sport magazines, or wading into the ocean each day, there seemed no great urge for him to move around much anymore. He simply did not seem bothered that his current life seemed absent of any new life challenges right now. Rita’s current “stay close to home” lifestyle seemed very much the same to him as well.

Lately, however, John began to experience a recurring dream from their transcontinental travel past. For over thirty years ago, John and Rita once met an Aborigine Indian on a camping tour who led a simple nomadic life amid the austere “Outback” region of Central Australia. In spite of the passing years, John still recalled the haunting shock he felt at the time, noticing the “wise old owl” presence of this Native Indian who so intensely stared at him for several minutes at a time during this weird encounter. He also remembered the shock of seeing tangible proof afterward that Australian aborigines rejected living cheaply and comfortably in modern public housing that the government built for them. John’s current flashback to such Aboriginal nomadic ways in the “Outback” also provided vivid images that these Native “Aussies” preferred roaming around wide open spaces to build temporary communities outdoors. But why did John dream so obsessively about these perplexing Aborigine encounters now?

So John decided to discuss those past Australia visions with Rita, to obtain some logical explanations for his current dream predicament. After looking at some old photos from this past Australian adventure, both of them soon reasoned that Aboriginal tribes embraced the idea of mobility from place to place in order to obtain a greater sense of self-identity and social connection. Like a fluttering butterfly freed from its ugly cocoon state while seeking the nectar of trees for its life sustainment, John suggested further that his dreams had made it clear to him that their new travel plans should similarly liberate both of their lives from life’s current mindless tedium. It made sense then that they would act upon these wanderlust revelations on their next U.S. road trip in early summer. Notice then how this latest travel itinerary that they would follow via Air B&B and Trip Advisor apps would provide refreshing enrichment of their own Iives as well as benefit to others at four of their scheduled destinations .

Heading north from home to Central Florida, John and Rita discovered their first self-enlightening encounter in the small Southern town of Leesburg, Florida. Finding a quaint community of rental huts along the picturesque Lake Griffin region, they would allot precious leisure time volunteering at a local wildlife shelter housing endangered Florida animals.

Moving west into the waterlogged Bayou region of the Deep South , Lafayette Louisiana would provide an ideal spot for John and Rita to explore this community’s strong Cajun traditions. Visiting a stilted swamp hut on one special occasion, Rita thus learned a “mountain” of ideas about cooking crawfish and other Cajun delicacies, while John took on the time- consuming task of assisting marsh and dune replanting efforts during morning fishing “runs” with locals along the nearby Vermillion River watershed .

Continuing west into the vast lowland expanses of Southern Texas, they booked a colorful cabin along the Gulf of Mexico in the small resort town of Seabrook. Hoping to “ramp up” their cardio fitness efforts, John and Rita undertook several invigorating walks along the long boardwalk shoreline. On one of these morning walks, a brief conversation with a friendly sea captain, led them to experience the thrill of sport fishing by booking a Deep Sea Charter expedition.

Bypassing the sprawling cities of Houston, San Antonio, and Dallas, John and Rita next opted for a more rural environs of quiet spiritual solitude further northward as they practiced their daily yoga sessions outside their cabin along Broken Bow Lake in southeastern Oklahoma. They also took time at the region’s Choctaw Resort Casino to engage in a captivating conversation with a modern day Choctaw ancestor. Being encouraged by this tribal member to pay a visit to a Choctaw Nation Community Center, John shared his expertise there for engaging kids to have faith in their future success through career outreach activities.

Ancient Aborigine memories
Leesburg lakeside leisure
Bayou swamp hut on stilts
Seabrook Gulf Coast cabins
Oklahoma Choctaw Indians insignia

2 thoughts on “Travel Butterflies In Action

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