Thursday, September 03, 2009

The Dream of a Lifetime

Joey and Rachel dreamed and schemed for a year. They each worked really hard in their professions and saved as much as possible. They sold everything that wasn't essential including Joey's Bose Wave radio. They did lots of research and corresponded with some travel writers who had done what they were about to do. They made an excel spreadsheet and projected their mileage and costs--food, gas, lodging, auto repairs, Starbucks. They bought a VW Westphalia van (known as a Westy by the devotees) and readied it for a year on the road. Then they christened the van "Gunther" and launched their journey with a well-attended Bon Voyage party.

They documented their trip with a blog. It turned out to be highly readable as they are both really good writers and they had some exciting/harrowing/beautiful adventures that they were generous enough to share with us through words and pictures. This picture was on the sidebar of their blog and it shows their route from LA north to Alaska, east to Montreal and down the Eastern Seaboard, then a roller coaster through the southern states and back to LA. That was Part One. Part Two of their journey made the loop from LA down the Pacific coast to the Panama Canal and back up again on the Gulf side of Latin America. WOW. That's a ROADTRIP! I love the symbols they have "riding" on top of Gunther to represent each destination.

This is how it was. Two surfboards, a pop-top camper, and an ocean view. The only thing that's missing in this shot is the hammocks that seemed to so frequently cradle their healthy, strong, suntanned bodies.
It was hard to let them go on that trip (not that they asked!) but we are so extremely glad now that they lived that dream. It wasn't something they just talked about. They did it. They made it happen. They shared it with the rest of us benchwarmers who maybe aren't so daring.
It makes me so happy that my son lived this dream and that beautiful Rachel was by his side. Before he went to Heaven, he was cooking up a new scheme--sailing around the world. Sometimes I think he knew his life would be short and he just went for it. If you have a dream, I want to encourage you to go for it, too, and I will cheer you on. I think that's what we're meant to do. I'm trying to find my way through grief so that I can still live some of my dreams.
And for all of us...carpe diem.

Those were the days, my friends...we thought they'd never end...
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8 comments:

Anonymous said...

Sweet Dreams to you both. I hope that we find them to...to have that back would just be my dream at least for now. Simple and easy!
Love Sharon

karengberger said...

Thank you for sharing this road trip story with us. It sounds as if it was a beautiful gift for both of them. The fact that they had the courage and determination to make such a journey, and did it in love (and friendship), is a rare thing, and a wonder to hear about.

Carpe Diem, indeed. May this story inspire hope in all of us, especially those of us whose dreams have been de-railed or broken. Blessings to you!

Anonymous said...

It was a wonderful trip for all of us....we were all able to share the dream.
lvi

Steve and Janna said...

I love reading your posts and am praying for you guys! Your courage and vulnerability speaks to me about who Jesus is. Love always, Janna

I can do everything through Him who gives me strength. Phil 4:13

Jeri said...

Joey was a good example of someone who always went for it no matter what he was doing. Thanks for the reminder that we need to go for it and pursue our dreams. Joey's life and his trip with Rachel is a good reminder as well.

Love you!

Liza's Eyeview said...

Ahh.. the Roadtrip, ... the "Living the Dream" ... and the blog about it ... brings back warm memories of Joey.... It's nice to be reminded that he lived his life to the fullest. What an inspiration to us all.

Van Down By The River said...

Love you Karen.

flowergardengirl said...

Very cool! Wish I was that brave. I have no problem coming up with ideas but am not so disciplined to carry them out. Joey did live life to the fullest.

My son is still driving my car since the wreck and I don't mind one bit. He can drive it all he wants. I like being there for my kids for their physical and mental needs.

It's more mental as they get older isn't it? I would have a hard time letting go if they wanted to go on such a trip as this. So true though--they don't ask.

My youngest--who has my car--keeps telling me that when he graduates from college--in a year and half---that he may have to move to California. He's a writer too and wants to eventually be a producer. He says the best way to start is in Calif or NY. Well they are both thousands of miles from NC. (: