Aloha…and…The Show Must Go On

We’ve been essentially off the grid lately, too far off for Jody to publish information about all our Hawaiian adventures.  More posts will be coming soon…with photos and descriptions of foods and all such details that she includes.

My recent research came up with mixed results, but somebody once said “Life is not a dress rehearsal.”  A good high-school friend of mine in Honolulu recently reminded me of this phrase after noticing my now very-worn black Gustavus t-shirt with the phrase “Make Your Life Count” in faded gold letters.  I imagine you’ve seen the shirt in about 80% of the photos of me on this blog…we travel light and my wardrobe is very limited, but clean.

In any case, this friend suggested that I was definitely making our lives count and fully  living life by taking my family on this adventure.  We have been making what he called “life memories” every single day over these nine months.  Our experiences will create specific memories we probably wouldn’t make in our living room in St. Paul or during our normal day to day activities during our REAL lives.  Yes, there are big costs associated with doing what we’ve done, but there are other costs and regrets we might have had by NOT leaving home.

He is wise, this friend.

This is a bit of a serious post compared to most of my lighter work.  That’s because the airline tickets are booked and we’re coming home next week. Yes, next week we have to start our re-entry process.  I need to find a job and a car, the kids will go back to their own bedrooms, we probably won’t see each other 24 hours/day 7 days a week, and we’ll get to see our family and friends again.

I’m not ready.  None of us are.

Re-entry will be difficult, I know.  I studied abroad in college and I experienced what was then called “reverse culture shock” upon my return to Gustavus.  Every member of our family is much different than we were when we left last September.  We’ve seen a lot and learned a lot about the world and other people and cultures and languages and foods.  And we’ve all grown up together every day and created more life memories than I think I even realize.  Now, we need to keep making our lives count by continuing to learn – at home or on the road.

In Europe, Australia, the South Pacific, or St. Paul, I really hope we can all work to keep understanding that we only get one shot at this life…we gotta live it while we can, enjoy the moments we have and, easy or difficult, fun or toil, the show must go on.

Hopefully you, dear reader, can do the same.

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6 Replies to “Aloha…and…The Show Must Go On

  1. Oh no! I can’t believe you are going home for ‘real life’ already. I think ‘real life’ might have been the last 9 months perhaps?! We loved seeing you all in Australia and living vicariously a little, seeing you explore new places as a family with such open-minded and optimistic spirits. We’re inspired by your globe-trotting lifestyle and look forward to catching up next time we are in the same country, north or south of the equator!

  2. Dear Mike and Jody,
    Your words, your pictures, your descriptions have enriched my life as I wake up to look for “Your doing what?”. What an amazing adventure you created and shared. I am so happy for you. Your words resonate, “Make everyday count and the Show must go on”. Thank you for sharing, for showing the rest of us what it means to try new things, sacrifice and make it happen. So anxious to see you all. Please give G an L big hugs!!!!
    As always, Safe Travels!!!!


  3. Say it ain’t so, Mike! Going to miss living vicariously through your adventures. My guess is you probably won’t have missed life as a wage slave (except maybe for the wages). Time with the fam is precious so it’s awesome you’ve made the most of this year.

  4. Glad you’re realistic about culture shock….it’s a real thing whether 3months, 9 months or 5 years away from “home”. Your memories will be with all of you forever and you did “live life” but you can also do that in St. Paul. You’re prepped to look outside the box now. Hope to see you and catch up at J’s graduation? Safe travels!

  5. As a rabid proponent of this adventure from the get go, it is amazing to hear your serious description and wisdom whether your own or borrowed as it winds up. Never had I imagined the width and breath of the places and experiences and how cool it would be to just wing it for once. I applaud you and Jody for doing something really spectacular, no holds barred, caution to the winds, damn the torpedoes and a bunch of other cliches. Your kids will forever be changed and matured by this. I accept your invitation to realize….the show must go on. Well done!

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