Why did humans ever settle? I often asked myself this as I saw new sights, things that quite literally took my breath away, every few days. This mini adventure has left me yearning for more; it’s so addictive that I’m now seriously looking into jobs in Alaska! Why not?! Apparently, I’ve kindled the Vagabond fire within, and the flame is refusing to die down. It probably doesn’t help that I met a most amazingly good person on my travels. I believe we are, dare I say it, kindred spirits. Yes, I am speaking of Ziggy Rainbow, my new-found (and too soon left behind) camping buddy. Don’t worry, folks. He isn’t some strange eccentric with rainbow dreadlocks, dressed in circus clothes. No, it’s just the pseudonym he chose, a name that has some familial importance to him.
The first thing I noticed about Ziggy Rainbow: a great smile, completely open and friendly. I first drove past his campground looking for a secluded one of my own, and he quickly looked up, smiled, and waved. Now, I’m from the South and most certainly appreciate Southern hospitality, but I have become unaccustomed to it since moving on, so seeing that ready smile and wave was a bit of a shock. I checked him out a couple more times before I finally initiated a conversation. I saw his Maine license plate, and recognized an opening.
V: So, you’re from Maine, huh? (I might as well have talked about the weather. I’m such a great conversationalist!)
ZR: Yup, I drove from there.
V: That’s the one on the corner, right?
ZR: (laugh) Yup, that’s how everyone knows it.
And thus began (what I hope to be) a great friendship. Ziggy Rainbow, I discovered, was on an awesome adventure of his own. Is there something better than Vagabond? Cause that’s what he is! He has been camping around America since September, and his travels will continue for months to come. Like myself (kind of), he is using the trip to do some introspection and discover what he really wants. We chatted for a bit, we discussed the size of his tent (ba-dum-ba shhhh). No really, he had a tent the size of a coffin. He was busy categorizing twigs and sticks for a fire (he has this thing about fire), so he invited me back to his campsite later. Just after sunset I made my way over with a package of cocoa almonds (I’m a good Southern girl, and I was taught to bring something for the host). He excitedly accepted the treat and pressed a beer on me in return (he has good manners, too). The conversation flowed easily, and wonderfully, and we agreed to meet for coffee the next morning at the diner up the hill. The next morning, we chatted once more, discussed our plans, and parted ways to reconnect later that evening. As I was readying to leave his campsite that night, we kept prolonging the conversation with “one more story”, and as we both left the next morning (me going south, he going north) he stopped by one final time and we wished each other good travels. I most sincerely hope to meet Ziggy Rainbow again, and I wish him luck, where ever he is. This is for you, Ziggy Rainbow!