As my wall calendar has quickly flipped from January to February, I am fighting the passage of time by thinking about what I want to do in 2021 and making my plan. Time does get away from us if we’re not watchful, doesn’t it?
Since 2021 will bring my 64th birthday (not to worry – my retirement is still years away according to today’s health status and forecast), I want to do a bit more travelling. It is with hope and good faith that I anticipate the COVID issues diminishing and the vaccine available for me by mid-year, so I can feel more comfortable getting on an airplane.
I won’t be gone from the office a lot or for extended periods, but I do want to visit some out-of-state friends, and I always like getting back to the Rocky Mountains periodically. Grand Teton National Park and Yellowstone are my favorite places on earth (so far), and when I visit, I leave with the feeling I want to get back there at least one more time.
Beyond where I have been before, I wish to travel to new locations. Some must-see places for me are the Custer Battlefield, the Bad Lands of South Dakota and Glacier National Park. In addition, I want to travel up the east coast, make a sobering stop at Antietam battlefield, and then trek to the coast of Maine. Not all these trips will happen in the next year or two, but I like to have a list.
What About Destinations and Journeys?
I already started my 2021 travels this January with a trip to North Carolina and back. My daughter and I managed about 1500 miles in about 60 hours. That long in the car (I will concede) is not so much travelling as it is insanity. I learned a bit about my jeep that is currently at a specialty mechanic to replace the engine with a 5.7-liter Dodge Hemi engine. Boys and their toys, right? Vroom, vroom.
The journey gave me plenty of time to think and come up with, if not solutions to the problems of the universe, at least more questions. Since this trip was so hurried, I thought about the point of our travels. Is it the journey or the destination most important? As my brother likes to say, “The destination is the journey”, or maybe he says, “The journey is the destination”? Regardless, you get the gist.
As we save and plan financially, it is easy to lose sight of what we are trying to accomplish and get lost in the numbers. I’m trying to stay focused as I build a multi-generational plan that looks forward to enhancing the lives and opportunities of those not even born yet. Such a plan starts with wealth … a wealth of values.
A Wealth of Values
If you’ve lived very long, you have probably said some version of the sentence, “This country/town/place isn’t like it used to be.” Some changes are really great (hooray for indoor plumbing!), while some changes are really distressing (pollution and perhaps politics). I’m not here to tell you that everything in our lives is better or worse than it was in yesteryear, but rather to acknowledge that it is different. My point is that as we build our financial wealth, it is important to build it on a foundation of purpose and communicate that purpose to the next generations.
My resolution this year is to write a book (perhaps a booklet would be better?) to describe the life I tried to build along with both the pitfalls and keys to success along the way. Who knows, perhaps someone down the line will even read it. One can hope. It’s part of the journey after all.