Posted by: apfunkworld | May 24, 2010

Country roads, take me home

Ever curious, I followed this road to a plateau with a stunning view of the countryside.

Ever curious, I followed this road to a plateau with a stunning view of the countryside.

A good road trip is never about the destination.  It’s always about the journey. I drove 3.5 hours to spend the weekend at a lake house on Buckeye Lake last Saturday.  The trip was rushed. I left too late in the day and had to drive straight down to arrive at a decent hour. The arduous drive left me feeling more stressed than relaxed.  This is not the way to begin a weekend getaway.

The beauty of a jaunt at the end of a long week is the opportunity to turn off your cell phone, stash away the lap top and escape to a place where no one knows you.  It is pure, unabashed freedom.

In my case, however, I’d made plans. Having accepted the gracious invitation to Buckeye Lake, I was obliged to fulfill a commitment. (My duty to subject myself to unfamiliar faces and loud music for the sake of catching up with a friend.)  The people were pleasant.  We enjoyed an evening of summertime festivities. Yet my inner-social-butterfly simply failed to metamorphose from a chrysalis. I just couldn’t scratch the itch to get out of there.

The adventurer within me was bent on a desire to explore the vast Mid-Ohio countryside in quiet solitude.  In full honesty, the work week had exhausted me.  I longed to escape the hustle and bustle of my suburban existence to investigate the mysteries of the pristine farm lands and sleepy villages they surrounded.  So I turned in early and set my sights on making the most of my drive home in the morning.

Rising with the sun the next day, I bid a farewell thanks to my host and took to the road.  I checked my GPS to ensure I was heading north and drove with no plan other than to meander my way home.  (Note: This is how you start a great road trip.)

Longaberger Basket Headquarters

Longaberger Basket Headquarters

The 3.5-hour commute evolved into a 12-hour “choose your own adventure” tale.  I ferried my way from Infirmary Mound Park in Uniontown to Roscoe Historic Village in Coshocton.  I discovered the fabled basket building that houses Longaberger Headquarters off of State Route 16 (and turned around twice to see it again).

I even happened upon the hometown of one of my favorite college friends, Channing.  A quick text and we planned to meet for lunch at The Depot Restaurant & Pub in Dresden. The thing that really made the impromptu rendezvous memorable is that he entertained my fancy to see the World’s Largest Basket, located in the center of Dresden village, and tour the Longaberger Homestead.

It is the detours that make life’s expeditions unforgettable. Don’t underestimate the neatly lined landscapes that abound in farm country.  It is the long stretches of highway where there is seemingly nothing more in sight than cow herds and rows of golden crops that hold the best surprises. Next time you have a day or two off from work or school, take a day trip.  Find out where those old country roads lead.

Posted by: apfunkworld | January 14, 2010

Estoy buscando por la pura vida: Vote to send me to Costa Rica.

Scenic view of Costa Rica

Mi familia was born from the rich coast, Costa Rica, in Central America. I long to live la pura vida it has to offer. Vote February 14 through March 1 to send me on a Costa Rican Explorer excursion with Gap Adventures.

People told me for years, “Travel while you’re young. Do it now while there is still time.”  I never quite understood what “while there is still time” means.  I don’t believe that one day the opportunity to venture around the world or even cross-country will cease to exist.  However, as I grow into adulthood, I am learning how the freedom of youth can swiftly escape a person.  I am not old, by any means, at the ripe age of 24.  It just seems financial and work responsibilities are mounting.  Evidence of the mundane future that awaits me is all around.  It is approaching too quickly and the message is crystal clear: I have to get out NOW!

Don’t get me wrong.  In the last two years, I have seized opportunities to adventure within my means.  I leapt off a thirty-foot ledge into Kentucky’s Lake Cumberland; parasailed over the jellyfish-infested waters of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina; toured the majestic Biltmore Estate in Asheville, North Carolina; and interviewed Proposition 8 protestors at a bus stop in West Hollywood during a week-long tour of Southern California.  These escapades were exhilarating, but short-lived.  

Currently, I am a university graduate living at home with mom, working a hum-drum job that pays no more than my college internship.  I never imagined myself here at this stage in life.  I’m tired of vicariously living the life of an explorer through National Geographic articles, Discovery channel specials, and brief vacations that do not last.  There is so much life beyond the sleepy suburbs of Northeast Ohio.  I want to live it.  I want to write about it.  

All my life I have dreamt of being some grand adventurer learning about the people, cultures, and nature of the world.  A passion for life on earth pulses through my veins like the tributaries of the world’s mightiest rivers.  I am ready to go international.  I plan to begin my world tour in Costa Rica, the country in which my mother was born.  I want to immerse myself in the beautiful culture of my family.  A heritage I have only experienced through my mother’s stories.  Also, I want to enhance my Spanish-speaking skills so I can communicate with my family directly and effectively.  

I have been planning my escape for months.  I set my get-away date for August 2010.  However, as I researched cheap travel options, I discovered an opportunity that could take me to my destination sooner than expected.  Travel blogger Nomadic Matt and Gap Adventures are hosting a blog/video contest.  The winner earns a two-week Costa Rica Explorer excursion in March and the opportunity to write about and record the experience.   

This is where I turn to you, my friends.  I need your votes to win this extraordinary prize.  It is more than just a vacation in paradise.  It is the opportunity to discover my heritage and family.  Please vote for me. Voting will begin on Sunday, February 14 and run through Monday, March 1. 

I will document my experience from the planning stages through my journey to discover la pura vida on the Rich Coast with my new Twitter account, TravelWits.  Also, I will be sure to keep you updated with video on YouTube.  Just remember, I need your help to get there first!  Thank you in advance for your support.

Posted by: apfunkworld | January 11, 2010

Hello world! Welcome to travel-holic’s anonymous.

Hello World!  My name is Priscilla and I am a travel-holic.  There is no denying it.  I love to traverse the road of life.  I want to share with you my experiences and tips on how to take full advantage of the traveling experience.  Step off the well-worn tourist path and delve into the wilderness of your next destination.

Check out photographs from my travels in these Facebook and MySpace albums:
U.S.S. Ronald Reagan – Coronado, California
San Diego, where I left my heart