On Sunday, DC EcoWomen gathered for delicious sandwiches and smoothies in Cleveland Park to discuss the inspiration, humor, and amazement we found in the book, Miles from Nowhere. The story chronicles the incredible adventure of Barbara Savage and her husband, who set out from California to travel the world by bicycle. The journey begins almost immediately, as the couple adjusts to the idea of leaving their modest lives and familiar routines behind as they start up the U.S. west coast. Through rain, high winds, and killer inclines, the pair endures hardships and experience delight in unexpected places as they meet interesting travelers, see the world, and cement their own relationship.
This story includes several themes that are central to the lives of many DC EcoWomen: world travel and wanderlust, cultural experiences, friendship, kindness, and the great outdoors. One of the topics we discussed was how to bring these values into our own lives as a way of shaking off the happy hour cobwebs and mixing up our routinized urban habits. Whether you’re a long-time resident or new to the city, it’s always important to seek out new groups, new activities, and new communities that will expose you to neighborhoods, parks, or events that you might not have found otherwise.
Our discussion also included many questions about the logistics of their two-year adventure. Aside from financial concerns, Barb and Larry had to find safe lodging and sufficient food each night, repair their bicycles, and cope with illnesses in foreign and developing countries. While we acknowledged that traveling as a woman can present special challenges, many of us agreed that our fearless storyteller matched her husband in strength, courage, and savvy. In fact, she inspired many of us to think about upcoming travel in our own lives. Whether the next few months see us biking around town or flying off to see Russia for the first time, this story inspired us all to look for compassion and generosity in others and make the best of the challenging situations we face.
A big thanks to Hawthorne Homemade for letting us sample their delicious butternut squash soup and green goddess smoothie! If you missed this event, check back in for our mini Book Club meeting in June, where we’ll continue discussions of wanderlust and traveling.