Big Life, Small Life

Big Life

From mid-January until last weekend I was on the road 53 days, something like 41,000 miles. Sitting next to someone on a plane or having lunch with a friend, inevitably I’ll hear, “So you travel a lot. That must be a lot of fun, right?

I don’t think anyone thinks traveling a lot is glamorous, at least not how I do it. A look at my expenses reveals an endless chain of receipts from Southwest, Enterprise, and Holiday Inn Express. I suppose the thing I splurge on is local foodie eateries… because I hate chains restaurants. But even still, if I can’t get a recommendation you might find me at a Chili’s or Texas Roadhouse more often than I’d care to admit.

Nut this is my Big Life. It’s out there and where people meet me and, I suppose, some people find it desirable.

I do like to travel. Heck, I love it. I do like exploring new places and meeting new people and all that. (Otherwise, why bother?) But the only thing that makes it a Big Life is the fact that travel draws some level of attention. People notice when I’m on the road and don’t notice when I’m at home.

Small Life

To contrast my Big Life I present you Small Life. The other 70% of my year is tiny, really. I work from home. (I rent a small office about a mile from home, but only go there a few days a month.)

70% of the year I don’t leave a 10 mile radius around my house. 

Some weeks I only leave my neighborhood to go to church, a whopping 4 miles. Some days I don’t even leave my property, or maybe I take a trip to the post office about .25 miles from home, and some nights Kristen and I go for a walk. A big day in my small life involves taking the kids to school, 6 miles round trip. 

When I’m not on the road my life gets really, really small.

And that’s not altogether glamorous or even interesting.

Perception and Reality

I find people’s perception of my dual-geographic-life fascinating. long for my Small Life. I love Small Life routines. Sharing morning coffee with Kristen, walking the dog, waving at our postal carrier, fiddling with the sprinklers, on and on.

What I consider Big Life is really a Small Life instead of the other way around.  Hitting it big, for me, would mean people would come to me instead of me going to them.

Here’s reality: When I’m on the road I miss Small Life. And when I’m home, I don’t really think much about Big Life.

Published
Categorized as Travel

By Adam McLane

Kristen and Adam live in the San Diego neighborhood of Rolando with their three children.

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