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Headed to Europe!

So before I jump into this week’s blog, I want to officially welcome Lindsay back from maternity leave! She returned last week, with her son Flynn in tow, and it’s great to have her back in the office.

And with one returning, naturally there is one leaving. That someone is your resident blogger himself: me. This Saturday, after over a year of planning, saving and sacrifice, I am boarding a red-eye flight to Budapest, Hungary. With Budapest as my starting point, I will spend the next month making my way through the Balkans solo, with planned stops in Ljubljana, Slovenia, Dubrovnik, Croatia (for you Game of Thrones fans), and Sarajevo, Bosnia.

This will be my first time overseas, and my first time traveling anywhere alone. If you had asked me a few years ago if I would have ever considered hopping a plane and heading to a foreign country on my lonesome, I would have responded with an emphatic “no.” However, my last real vacation—a trip to Seattle in 2013 to attend a friend’s wedding—was the catalyst in my desire to travel, and with travel, oftentimes social timelines do not align. I accepted that if I wanted to see the world, I may have to see it on my own.

But aside from logistical motivations, there is something liberating about solo travel. Where your itinerary is entirely your own, and you are free to immerse yourself in completely new surroundings and completely new cultures. It’s simultaneously exciting and terrifying, and it’s the kind of experience that builds character. Diving into the deep-end and seeing what happens.

I will be returning to the office on Monday, April 13th. In the meantime, Russell has graciously offered to personally manage my accounts—and the blog!—during my travels. I’ll be sure to have stories and pictures upon my return!

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