After traveling and being on the move for three years, I’ve found a place to stay for awhile.
Blue Ridge Mountains photo courtesy of Creative Commons
In April I returned to the states from Guatemala and packed most of my belongings in my car. I left my childhood home to drive south on the night of a Taurus new moon.
“The moon in Taurus is a time of recognizing and aligning with what we truly value, and then vowing to live our lives in a way that truly upholds and reflects it.”
A few things I truly value: clear and honest communication, lasting relationships, people who aren’t afraid to look you in the eyes while speaking, community, caring for and preserving the planet, conscious consumerism and repurposing, health and wellness, spending time outside, practicing yoga consistently, and eating local plant-based diets. And so I headed south to Asheville, a big city with a small town feel where I can foster all these things and more into my daily life.
Downtown Asheville Courtesy Flickr Creative Commons
Asheville is the perfect meeting point of north and south. I’ve never lived in the south and want to experience life in this part of the country. I grew up vacationing at the Outer Banks and have always had a deep love for North Carolina.
I’ve spent so much time getting to know the ins and outs of other countries, and now I want to get to know more of my own. When I first visited Asheville in June 2013 I knew I’d end up here someday. It’s a traveler’s haven with a mystical allure. Being here will help me understand the concept of place and how certain places have a pull on us all.
What is it about certain places that call to us? What makes one place more alluring then the next? How does place and our attachment to place affect who we are?
For the past few years I’ve been exploring jungles, rainforests, mountains, beach towns, volcanoes. Each environment has had different effects on my well-being and circumstance.
Now I’m ready to remain in one place, in one piece and see what happens when I just let myself be. I’m ready to embrace one place, one region and see how that affects me.
For me stillness has always been in the motion. I’ve found clarity from running, from escaping, from dancing, from road tripping, from plane hopping. I’ve needed to keep on moving to find peace in my mind. The movement has been my meditation, my way to quiet my brain, my way to sort things out. Like Bob Dylan says, for awhile the only thing I knew how to do was to keep on keepin’ on.
Now I’m planting roots so I can rise up. I’m planting roots so I can branch out in ways that only come when there’s stability.
Photo courtesy of Creative Commons
I’m ready to be a local at the community yoga class, know the farmers at the farmers market, build lasting connections, attend weekly bluegrass jam nights, complete projects, have a favorite coffee shop and so much more. At least for now.
“Perhaps the most radical thing we can do is stay home so we can learn the names of plants and animals around us; so that we can begin to know what tradition we are a part of.” -Terry Tempest Williams
Not long after I landed in Asheville I read that quote somewhere.
Here’s to being radical, getting to really know a place and through that getting to know a community and myself.