Hey everybody! Let us just get right into it. Traveling IS NOT easy. Well, if you do it my way.
Two months ago, I embarked on the journey that most dream of but are often stuck in the mundane of life. My dog, Maya, and I were beaten and battered by everything going on in this world. We had to get out of our everyday lifestyle. So, I packed our bags and off we went on an indefinite road trip across the Western United States.
Now, you are probably thinking that I am your average traveler that books an AirBNB or even owns an RV. In fact, we live in my car (Meeka)! There are a plethora of reasons why living in your car is the way to go and why it is not. Gas is cheaper in a car, I do not have to worry about expensive hotels, I have 4WD and can go anywhere, etc. On the opposite end of the spectrum, DIRT.
Dirt is everywhere. I simply cannot escape it. Living on the road you get used to being… gross. There are plenty of other reasons why it is not for the lighthearted, but I will let you in on my little secret: Despite all the difficulties, I would not change my living situation for the world.
Explore hidden gems, meet locals, immerse yourself into culture, art, and wonders. Traveling full-time is not for everybody but it is one of the most enriching experiences I have received. For example, I have always had an introverted personality; this trip was going to be my getaway from people. Then, on my very first night I met two wonderful women that invited me to camp with them. This was out of my comfort zone entirely, but this trip had a mind of its own. [Fun Fact: I planned this trip down to the very minute detail. As soon as I got on the road, I threw my plans out the window and began living] It wanted to stretch my boundaries and force me to grow and blossom as a person. Over the course of this trip, I have met so many godsend people that expanded my horizons. From a beautiful shamanistic woman to a local candy shop man in Sedona the stories are endless!
Not only have I experienced amazing people I have also experienced nature. Nature is breathtakingly divine. Imagine standing in a forest of ancient Joshua trees that have been there since the time of the giant sloths. Kayak through Antelope Canyon and camp on the beach under the Milky Way. There was one day in which I had come across this hidden gem called Temple Mountain. I decided to hike around the area for about 10 miles, it was the end of the day and Maya and I were exhausted from the desert heat. Then this gut feeling welled up inside me telling me that I should backpack out at sunset and camp up at the top of the mountain. Crazily enough, I did it. I did not pitch a tent. I slept outside, in the wilderness, on top of a mountain, and it was otherworldly. I could see every star in the sky and the Milky Way streaking its way across the heavens. Like I said, the trip has a mind of its own. It is guiding me, and I would not have it any other way!
Rachel is a poet, writer, photographer, and adventurer currently traveling the Western United States. You can find her on Instagram at @rachel_jonesy_.