The first phase of the sabbatical has been unexpectedly challenging, unbelievably rewarding, and a little transformative. It’s been an amazing summer of reconnecting with my family, travel, and thinking. I’m so glad I made the decision to pause my career for a few months and seek a new perspective.
The first lap of our road trip took us through Zion National Park, Las Vegas, the Sierras and Sequoia National Park, San Francisco, the Oregon Coast, Rainier National Park, Seattle and Olympic National Park. We returned by way of Montana, Flathead lake, the Big Hole River, Lava Hot Springs, Dinosaur National Monument, and Denver.
After a couple of weeks on the ranch in Sterling, we drove through Lake McConaughy, Yankton, and Sioux Falls on our way to Minneapolis. Then we drove along Lake Superior to Grand Portage. We cut back to the Canadian Border and Voyageurs National Park. Then we drove through North Dakota to Theodore Roosevelt National Monument. We headed south to Rapid City, then passed through Mammoth Site and Scottsbluff on the way home.
All told, it was about 11,000 miles, 22 National Parks/Monuments, and 15 states. It was truly an epic trip. I wish I could have spent more time almost everywhere, but I’m also tired of travel and ready to stay put.
I’m in phase 2 of the sabbatical. I’m going to spend the next few weeks finishing up an overdue renovation project on the house, and thoroughly thinking through the kind of work I want to do next. In October, I’ll get serious about restarting my career and creating the life I want to live.