I’ve been a wanderer since I can remember, and from what I hear I was a wanderer even before that.
I don’t know how old I was, but it was at some point between when I could walk on my own, and my first memory, which I can’t really remember anyways actually… so let’s just say under 5.
I apparently had the chronic habit of wandering off whenever a devoted eye wasn’t on me. If I wasn’t corralled in some sort of play pin or tethered to a parent with one of those bungee wrist leashes, I seemed to move quite quickly for a little guy who could barely walk straight. One day my father wanted to see what I would do if I were able to choose my own path and keep wandering without obstruction.
We were in a shopping mall and when I started my initial wandering, instead of swooping me up and lecturing me for running off again, my father would duck into a store or hide behind a kiosk to create the illusion that I was alone. I believe he was thinking I would panic, cry and want my daddy, but instead I just kept walking, checking out the big world of a shopping mall before me.
I can only imagine what the scene must have looked like to the other mall patrons: a toddler moseying through a mall and a careful father following close behind utilizing cover to stay incognito…
Anyways, apparently, after passing by all the boring stores, I stopped at the penny throwing fountain to take in the view for a few seconds… turned back to take one last look at the big world I had just explored, and then headed straight for the front door to the real world!
Time for world 2 of the day — that must have been what I was thinking… So after shoving my way through the heavy mall door (no automatic doors in those days kids), I kept going full tilt through the parking lot, heading straight for the big pretty fire trucks speeding by when — SWOOP — exploration over. Father saves the day and keeps me from being a street pancake.
Then I cried…
Apparently it wasn’t being alone that scared me, but the adventure being over that upset me. However, I lived to see another day and I’ve actually ended up exploring quite a bit more since then. Thanks for saving me Pop.
The South America adventure is over, the craziest year yet, but I survived, and it is time to travel to a new “world”… which is actually the home I’ve been away from so long. Don’t expect me to stay long though… I’ll probably just wander off again…