Current location: Minneapolis, MN
Miles traveled since last stop: 495
Total miles traveled: 1400+
A quick update from the road. I'm just getting ready to head out from Minneapolis towards my next stop, Badlands National Park in South Dakota.
It's been a pretty awesome start to the trip. I've seen a lot and experienced a lot already. Things that have confirmed I'm on the right path and doing the right thing. Some highlights of the first few days:
Watkins Glen State Park was great. Awesome campground and the gorge trail felt like something out of Lord of the Rings.
Next I hit up Niagara Falls. I was SO glad I did this. The falls are so huge and truly a wonder. I got a little emotional while on the Maid of the Mist boat that takes you right outside the center of the falls. Some pictures here if you haven't seen them already.
After leaving the falls I had my first experience of needing to let go. I was trying to push myself to make it to a particular destination after spending most the day walking in the hot sun at the falls. I was getting super tired and drowsy in the car. I hate driving like this, it's so dangerous. Then I realized: "Why am I pushing myself? I don't NEED to get to any specific place tonight." I decided that I would need to stop to find a place to sleep and miraculously, the very next sign on the road said "Lake Erie State Park: Camping". What a sign. I stayed at this park that night and experienced one of the best sunsets I've ever seen.
The next day I made it to Cleveland (really cool town by the way) where I stayed the night before getting to experience the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame the next morning. Here is where I had another great experience, which had nothing to do with rock and roll.
I've been keeping up with my normal practice of meditating every morning for as long as feels good. This morning I had a great practice, was feeling awesome, and that the journey was helping improve my meditations. When I got to the Hall of Fame I bought my ticket and approached the entrance, the woman who took my ticket looked at me and said: "You have the most calming and peaceful aura around you. You just made my day. Thank you". It was an awesome message from her and the universe comfirming how I felt earlier. Wow.
After the hall I drove 20 mins for a nice hike in Cuyahoga Valley National Park before continuing West.
I headed out trying to make it to Chicago but that was a bit too much driving to handle. As it got dark I was in Indiana and needed a place to sleep. I went to a campsite and was turned away as they were full. It was getting dark and I made it to another campground which had a sign stating it was full as well. Needing just a place to hang my hammock and sleep I drove around the grounds anyway looking for anything I could find. I found a site that was actually empty, set up my hammock, had a quick sleep, and snuck out bright and early in the morning after having a great meditation at sunrise.
My last couple days I've been in Minneapolis, Minnesota where I had one other crazy experience. As I got into town after a day of driving and really wanted to get some yoga to relax the legs. I found one via Google that looked good and was on my way. As the class started, the teacher wanted to use a mudra (a ritual hand gesture that represents a certain action or need) through class. As she explained the mudra she said it was the mudra for surrender, and letting go. I was so shocked. I've been calling this road trip my "surrender journey" for months when I first got the idea. Just another amazing coincidence that meant a lot to me. The more I've let go on this trip, the more things have manifested and appeared when I needed them. Another wow moment.
And that's where I stand for now. It's bright and early Monday July 8 and I'm heading out towards my next stop, Badlands National Park. See you soon.