This I Believe

Kirk - San Anselmo, California
Entered on September 20, 2007
Age Group: 30 - 50
Themes: change, nature

My mom believed in getting out, and so do I. She lived outside, her arms and shoulders always brown. She threw parties on the patio. She planned vacations. I spent most of my childhood out and about thanks to my mom, out running around, experiencing the world.

Through puberty and cars and college I still managed to get out. I rode my bike, climbed mountains, took road trips, and eventually I got out of the country. In my mid twenties I spent four months on the road in South America. For someone who was reared in a small town it was a big deal, and ultimately I found my limits. My sudden return home felt like defeat at the time, but in retrospect I know that I learned exactly what I set out to learn. I knew that getting out – way out – would do me good.

I still believe in getting out, but I’ve grown to appreciate its many varieties. I believe in getting out of my chair at work, and I believe in getting out of my office at lunchtime. I even spend some of my lunches bird watching or laying in the grass or walking around so that I can get my mind out of the office, too.

I believe in getting out of my house at night, when the world smells and sounds and looks different than it does during the day. And I like to take my sons out whenever possible, even if it means going in, like into a zoo, a museum, or a theater.

I also believe, more than ever, in the importance of getting out of my comfort zone; out of my town, out of my state, out of my country. I work for an adventure travel company that helps people journey to far away places, and I believe in what I do. I believe that my clients and the world benefit from the mix of cultures, the understanding of different points of view, the experience. I think that getting away from the familiar is one of the best ways to get out.

In the end, I believe that getting out brings balance. Whether it’s for a breath of fresh air or a trip out of town, I believe in the power of getting out and what it can do for the mind, the spirit, and the world.