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Back from Australia, Time for a New Challenge!

As you probably have guessed, I made it home from Australia. Dawn and I decided that although our time in Australia was great, our future travels would be along different paths. I have spent the last 8 months catching up with friends and family, and doing some local trips around the US. My travels in Australia have encouraged me to seek out the interesting sights and experiences more local to home.

Since I've been back from Australia I have traveled up and down the east coast and headed into the heart of the Midwest. Most of these trips were to visit with friends that have moved away, but it still allowed me to scratch the itch of seeing something new. However, I want to continue to push myself further outside my usual comfort zone. I went on 15 trips through 10 different states, but only a couple of these took me somewhere completely new. It's time to challenge myself to go where I've never gone before!

Originally I talked to my family/friends about trying to visit all 50 states (and DC) in 50 weeks. After thinking about it, I realized that this would limit the number of annual trips I already make (like St. Patty's in Pittsburgh, Memorial Day in Kentucky, going home to Cincinnati, King's Dominion trip to Virginia, beach trips to the outer banks, etc), so I've decided to scale it back a little. I still want to visit all 50 states, just maybe not so aggressively. Hopefully this will also mean it will be easier to convince friends to accompany me on my trips. I have decided on the following pledge: I will visit all 50 states (and DC) within the next 3 years!

There are, of course, a couple stipulations to make sure I don't cheat. I routinely visit 8 different states each year and have been to most states on the east coast multiple times, both of which lessen the whole purpose of this challenge. For the trip to count as having visited a new state, the following must be observed:

  • I must travel somewhere I have never visited before. (This rule is to make sure I experience a new side of North Carolina, Ohio, and Pennsylvania, and all other states I visit frequently)
  • I must do something truly unique within the area or state for the trip to count. Obviously airports do not count. Driving across the state line does not count. I must be able to experience something unique about the state.

This may not sound too ambitious, but this means I will travel to a new state every 3 weeks (in addition to my normal travels). I also am already planning on multiple trips outside the US. My originally planned trip to Romania/Bulgaria/Turkey got canceled, but I am now planning trips to Ireland/UK and to South America or South Africa. After having taken some time off, I will recommit myself to keeping this travel log updated!

Look forward to an exciting 2010!

Posted by Mike.Flynn 09:51 Archived in USA

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