If I had unlimited money and no job, I think I would spend most of my time traveling the world. It’s true that I’m not the most adventurous traveler — I enjoy wild scenery to hike through, good local food and drink, and a fresh perspective to appreciate with friends and family — but regular travel seems to be necessary for my mental well-being.

As I write this in September 2020, we’re just about six months into the COVID-19 pandemic. Six months cooped up, working from home, barely interacting with anyone else, even family. Normally our spring, summer, and fall are full of day trips to local natural areas, long weekends to visit friends, and — if we can swing it — a week vacation somewhere new or familiar, but far from home.

Last year at this time Sarah and I went to Iceland with two close friends, leaving our young daughter with my parents. It was my first international trip, and it was just incredibly, unexpectedly therapeutic. I’ve been thinking about that trip a lot recently. With America mishandling multiple overlapping crises — the pandemic (which other countries, like Iceland, have under control), police brutality and racism, foreign interference in the fateful upcoming election, and now raging wildfires exacerbated by climate change — I am desperate for even a temporary break.

I find myself fantasizing about taking my little family far from this chaos. Since that isn’t really an option at the moment, I am reminiscing and reliving past adventures, and brainstorming new ones. I’m learning that while travel is a temporary change of environment, it leaves a lasting impression. I am mining those memories now to remind me that things won’t always be this bad. New adventures await.

Recent Adventures


  • Late July – Vermont, USA
  • Late July – Niagara Falls, New York, USA
  • Mid July – Pocono Mountains, Pennsylvania, USA
  • Late May – Blue Ridge Mountains, Virginia, USA
  • Early February – Allegheny Mountains, Pennsylvania, USA


  • Late October – Ithaca, New York, USA
  • Late January / Early February – Ames, Iowa, USA


  • Late December – Cleveland, Ohio, USA
  • Mid October – Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA
  • Early September – Iceland
  • Early August – Vermont, USA
  • Mid May – Intercourse, Pennsylvania, USA
  • Late January – Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA


  • Late October – Asheville, North Carolina, USA
  • Mid July – York and Hummelstown, Pennsylvania, USA
  • Late May – Cleveland, Ohio, USA


  • Late December – Cleveland, Ohio, USA
  • Early November – New York City, USA
  • Late October – York, Pennsylvania, USA
  • Late October – Baltimore, Maryland, USA
  • Late July – Vermont, USA
  • Mid July – Ithaca, New York, USA


  • Late October – New York City, USA
  • Late July / Early August – Vermont, USA


  • Late October / Early November – Washington, DC, USA
  • Mid May – Marietta, Ohio, USA