Skip to content

Lovin’ Lake Erie

2009 August 13

Who, my age, doesn’t travel or hasn’t traveled? Our generation is obsessed with study abroad and the backpacking thing. I had a political science professor once who, when I told him that I was backpacking in Western Europe for the summer replied, “Why don’t you go to India. Everyone goes to Europe.” I told him I’d never been our of the country before, so I thought I’d start somewhere that was pretty basic to navigate.

I was born and raised in Cleveland, and I have, since I was little, wanted to live anywhere but Ohio. Of course, I went to college in Ohio, got a newspaper job in Ohio, went back to school to get my teaching license (guess where), and now I … (surprise). I have, like many people have, worried that I am settling here because it’s easy, which is true. It is easy to stay around your friends, your family, and cheap housing. But, I’m thinking there might be more to it than that.

In Emerson’s essay “Self Reliance” he slams traveling. He says the contented person has no need to travel. “Traveling is a fool’s paradise” and “a symptom of a deeper unsoundness affecting the whole intellectual action.” I agree with Emerson on one part of this, but not the other.

Here’s where I agree: Embrace what’s near you. I spend crap-tons of money traveling, but I rarely walk (literally) the 10 minutes to Lake Erie. If we actually LOOK, there’s quite a bit here, but it’s hard to find. This is especially true of Cleveland. There are rivers, trees, lakes, art galleries (not to mention Momocho, Melt, Lolita, and Lilly Handmade Chocolates). If you look closely, this is a pretty rad place. But it’s easy to stay inside and watch the Food Network and Discovery.

Here’s where I disagree: What’s wrong with a little “unsoundness” of soul? Emerson was a pretty serene guy, but I think that as long as we’re a little unsound, we’re always looking for something. I know I am. I think it might even be a failure to be completely content. Isn’t that what makes us find the next great thing — the uneasiness of its absense and the unending push to try to make it happen?

So, for me, 29 will be like that — I hope. A balance between reveling in my surroundings and stepping outside of them.

No Responses leave one →
  1. Kyle Schneider permalink
    December 14, 2010


  2. Laura permalink
    December 15, 2010

    This entry is so lame. Also, tiny pepperoni are fun. And I like peppers, as of last week.

Leave a Reply

Note: You can use basic XHTML in your comments. Your email address will never be published.

Subscribe to this comment feed via RSS