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Wherever I traveled, books were always part of the journey. And this lake in Illinois' Lincoln Trail State Park is just one of many I've sat beside while reading. -- Photo by Pat Bean

Wherever I traveled, books were always part of the journey. And this lake in Illinois’ Lincoln Trail State Park is just one of many I’ve sat beside while reading. — Photo by Pat Bean

“Travel is like love: It cracks you open, and so pushes you over all the walls and low horizons that habits and defensiveness set up.” – Pico Iyer

Finding Buried Treasure

The above quote begins essayist Pico Iyer’s foreword in the book “Wanderlust: Real Life Tales of Adventure and Romance.”

Just find me a bench, like this one that sits in Amherstburg, Ontario, beside an Erie River harbor and a book, and I can be happy for hours. -- Photo by Pat Bean

Just find me a bench, like this one that sits in Amherstburg, Ontario, beside an Erie River harbor, and a book, and I can be happy for hours. — Photo by Pat Bean

I recently reclaimed this book of travel essays, unread except for the foreword, from one of the dozen or so bins of stuff I couldn’t part with when I began a life on the road in 2004. Finding it again – with its many intriguing chapter titles such as “On the Amazon,” “Naxos Nights,” “I Lost it at Club Med,”  “Bewitched on Bali” and “Sleeping with Elephants,” was like coming across buried treasure.

A travel book is always one of the books I’m reading at any given time, along with a mystery, a fantasy and a nature book (more and more these days on my Kindle); and I always have dozens of backups – I guess you could say books are my security blanket.

As I renewed my acquaintance with this book of essays called “Wanderlust,” which I acquired before spending nine years living full-time in a small RV, I saw that I had highlighted quite a few of Pico’s travel quotes in its foreword, which probably coincided with my frame of mind with freedom of the road loaming ahead.

Perhaps they will mean something to you, too.

  “…home is something portable that we carry around with us”

            “…’wander’ has little to do with crossing borders and getting stamps in one’s passport, and everything to do with stretching the boundaries of one’s perspective and being constantly drawn to challenge. The person susceptible to wanderlust is not so much addicted to movement as committed to transformation.”

            “We travel, then, in search of both self and anonymity … and people cannot put a name or tag to us.”  

            “A man (or woman) never goes so far as when he doesn’t know where he is going.”

            “Many of us travel not in search of answers but in search of better questions.”

That last was certainly true of my travels. I found few answers but hundreds of questions.

The Wondering-Wanderer's blog pick of the day.

The Wondering-Wanderer’s blog pick of the day.

Bean’s Pat: Autumn Path http://tinyurl.com/mt4uedk I chose this blog today because it made me want to get out and take a walk – and moving is a good thing to help insure this old broad’s ability to continue traveling.

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