Solo Traveler: Traveling For Inspiration

Solo Traveler: Traveling for inspiration
Column by SHERRY HARDAGE

People who travel broadly do it for a variety of reasons. Personally I love to experience life and culture outside the realm to which I’ve become accustomed.

And in the process, I am often inspired to look at an incident and see it in a wider global context, to put some normal life occurrence into a broader perspective. Once in a while, poetry even gets written.

Iceberg in Alaska. Photo by Sherry Hardage

Alaskan Excursion

The tough old bird
yelled at the clueless
land-living tourists,
gawking at the iceberg
instead of paying attention
to a passing boat.
 
Many toppled
when the craft rocked.
One almost fell in
35-degree water.
If the cold didn’t kill him
his cameras would have
taken him down.
 
The tough old bird
drove us up to another
white and blue sheet.
Glacier dropping bergs,
he pointed to the rock.
A thousand yards exposed
by its five-year retreat.
 
Scary isn’t it? I asked.
He chuckled.
Nothing scary about it!
It’s entertaining.
Different every time we
come here.
 
Wonder what it would
be like if the glacier
came forward at the
same rate?
I pondered.
 
Now that would be scary,
he said.
There’d have to be an ice age.
People would be
starving to death
all over the world.
 
On the way back
he cranked up the radio
and blasted us with
that most knowledgeable
of commentators:
Rush Limbaugh

Editor’s note: Sherry Hardage lives in Los Alamos and has been traveling solo in the U.S., Mexico, and Europe since she retired from Honeywell in 2009. She is a photographer, writer, and guide who organizes tours of Chiapas, Mexico through her website: www.mexadventures.com. Hardage welcomes comments via email: hardagesa@aol.com

 

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