The United States celebrates Independence Day on July 4. As of this year, I have my own Independence Day: July 3.
That was the day Ben told me he was moving back to Michigan. My favorite colleague, my trainer, my friend. I told him he wasn’t allowed to drop off the face of the earth, and we started sharing our plans for the future. Me, leaving Denver in a year to start buying one-way tickets and doing seasonal work. Him, live in Michigan for a year and start a business.
We should take a road trip, we decided. A week of wandering.
Erick, our mutual friend, joined the conversation.
No, we decided. It’ll be longer than that. Let’s make it the “Great American Road Trip”!
It was all still humor. All still a half formed dream that would never come to fruition.
I don’t remember who said it first, but someone suggested, “Let’s buy a bus!”
We started looking it up.
The joking stopped.
“Wait, are we really doing this?”
We awkwardly shook hands as a trio. Yes, yes I think we are.
The last two months have flown by. We incorporated Ben’s business, got a joint phone plan, talked to insurance agents, bought an RV, and drank a lot of tea.
Today, I hugged Ben tightly as he climbed into our Breaking Bad-eque RV and began his nomadic trek to Michigan.
I’m not sharing this article with my ten followers on Facebook. I’m allowing it to be open, published. The world can see it if they look hard enough. But my soul is quiet right now as preparations begin in earnest for me to begin vagabonding.
The story will be here. Someday in the future, I want to be able to look back and see what I was thinking. See the journey. But keep it quiet from my audience, while the trepidation still lingers in the shadows.
I will go. I will nomad. I will vagabond.
But while those plans form, while states separate us, I will remember it here in the silence.
Because I know it’s real: I have my independence day.