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The Conscious Kind Project

Stay Wild

One of our contributors, Lisa Dougherty, is out in the wild making up this thing she calls "The Conscious Kind Project" as she goes. Check it out...

You see the thing is, I had every reason to stay. To stay at my "grown up" job, stay at my home, stay with my friends, and continue exploring the wonderland that is the Northwest. It started out as a fleeting thought but over time became something bigger. You know what I'm talking about- a voice that gets so loud you can't ignore it. It's a calling that you can't really control or even explain. It's a feeling that everyone feels but only some act on. It's what makes us the "wild ones".

This particular calling came to me about 2 months ago- "I'm going to drop everything and travel around the country by train" I thought. The next thing I knew I put my notice in at the office, rented out my room and had to fill a backpack for 2-3 months. I chose to go by train simply because I'm fascinated with the the time you get with this type of travel as opposed to driving a car. What can I do with all of this free time? I came up with a haphazard route and have to rely on old friends, strangers and myself to get anywhere when I'm off the train. I'm not entirely sure where I'm going to end up or who I'll meet up with which is equally terrifying as it is intriguing. This is how adventures are born.


It's been one week since I left everything in Portland, OR and made my way to Los Angeles- the first leg of my trip. In between I've found myself sharing stories and drinks with strangers on the train, exploring hot springs in the eastern Sierras with old friends, and camping alone in Yosemite National Park. So far I've gotten lost, sunburned, splinters in my feet and my back is killing me from my over-packed backpack. I've made up songs on my harmonica, read stories and learned how to tie some knots (you know, for survival and stuff). I've got about 3 more months of this. Some people are calling this a "mid-life crisis". Others are referring to this as a "life-altering" experience, questioning "are you ready for something like this?". Fortunately, a lot of people are so wonderfully supportive. Me? I'm just going through the motions. This whole thing might seem outlandish but surely not impossible. Call it what you want, but to me this is the idea, the feeling, the calling- the ultimate adventure.

Keep up with Lisa HERE>>>