Stories of Getting Lost and How They Pave the Way

When I was 16 years old, with a newly minted driver’s license in hand, I drove 40 minutes in the wrong direction in my hometown of Jacksonville, FL, arriving in Georgia just after midnight. During my first solo trip abroad, I took the wrong bus in Valencia, Spain, and claimed my title as the last remaining passenger at the end of the bus route, on the opposite side of town. My subpar Spanish speaking skills were useless. For my 26th birthday, I embarked on a two-month trip to Southeast Asia with only the first week planned, leaving seven … [Read more...]

The Forgotten Box of Letters  

In a dark and dusty corner of the garage is a box. The box is old, with a Pinnacle Orchards logo on top and a shipment date of December 1966. Someone in Jacksonville, FL, received fruit from Oregon that holiday season. In its 58 years, the box has housed an array of items, as shown from the scribbled handwriting on top. Decorations, at one time. Household items during another. But now the box holds letters. They aren’t mine, of course. They belong to my dad. He used to call it his “box of love letters.” And, growing up, he would tell me … [Read more...]

30 Lessons From 30 Years of Living

     It happened. I recently turned 30. And you know what? It feels great. (It feels mostly the same, really.) These lists are cliché but I couldn’t help myself. Here are 30 things I’ve learned from 30 years in this world. 1. Most (if not all) conflict stems from miscommunication. Generally speaking, misunderstandings, not malice, create conflict. Don’t underestimate the power of effective communication. 2. Mistakes are a good thing. I’ve become less concerned about making mistakes and more concerned about making nothing. Mistakes mean … [Read more...]