, , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Those of you who’ve followed my travel adventures over the last couple years know that when I travel solo, I’m pretty frugal.

Partly this frugality comes from growing up in Montana and partly from living fourteen years in northern New England.

But it also has something to do with my version of nomadicism.

Whenever I hit the road, the back of my mentality remembers the nomadics throughout human history. Even today nomads – and refugees, and the very poor – travel pretty hardcore comparative to what media and most of US society believes is normal.

Last summer, after People Report Summer Camp in Dallas, I decided to take Greyhound back to Portland Oregon. It was smelly, slightly dangerous (at least until Colorado) and uncomfortable. But, I met some very interesting folks that I still keep in touch with – a ranching grandma, a college student heading into foreign affairs and a railroad locomotive engineer.

Since Spring 2009, I’ve taken eight long-distance (multi-night) trips in coach on Amtrak. Out of 800 hours of rail travel, I’ve shared the seat next to me maybe 40 hours.

I’ve slept at least four nights on the granite floor of Boston South Station in the last 2.5 years waiting for a bus to leave in the next seven hours.

I get a kick out of traveling uncomfortably. It reminds me of the reality of millions of humans today.

By the way, when I travel with a lady friend, I like traveling in comfort, unless we’ve mutually decided to “rough” it.

Tonight I’m parked in a Motel 6 on the coast of New Hampshire. There’s a bed, table, desk, chairs, television, shower and air conditioning.

It ain’t bad. Oh and fyi – Dennys still makes a good burger.