Westward! And I’m off!

G’day from Amtrak, where I’m setting up camp for the next 44-ish hours (touch wood, no longer than that!).

Chicago was fantastic, but I’m feeling super excited about this next leg of the journey. It’s been an epic few months since I quit my job and upturned my comfortable DC existence, and I suppose this trek west marks an end of something, yet the beginning of something even bigger.

The waiting room at Chicago’s Union Station was filled with wrinkled cowboys, excited blue-hairs and more Amish than I’ve ever seen outside of buggy-happy Lancaster, PA. This is an absolutely fascinating glimpse at the side of Americana I rarely see.

Last night, after a really enjoyable sushi dinner with my cousin and her friend, I stayed up late with my cousin’s husband watching coverage of the sad event of the day–the passing of an icon of our era, the brilliant, kind and humble Steve Jobs. Still today Facebook and Twitter feeds are abuzz with quotes and video footage replaying the wise words of a man who encouraged us to live big, to never settle and to leave our mark on this world. It seems a fitting time for such a reminder.

The train has just pulled out of the station. I’m officially on my way.

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