I firmly believe that everything in life has the potential to become an adventure.  I recently watched a film called 180⁰ South, about a guy who retraces the steps of his heroes who took a 1968 trip to Patagonia to climb a mountain called Corcovado.  There was a quote in there by one of the gentlemen who made the original journey, Yvon Chouinard (also notably founder of the outdoor clothing line Patagonia – the other guy on the trip, Doug Tompkins went on to found The North Face) -  “The word adventure has gotten overused.  For me, when everything goes wrong – that’s when adventure starts.”  Powerful – this guy has the same outlook on life that I do.

My family now has a saying for when things veer off course on an outing – “It’s an adventure”.  My mom usually says this in her best sarcastic tone – my dad and I may have a slightly more reckless sense of adventure than she does!  The best adventures in life lay the groundwork for the most memorable stories.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m not wishing for everything to go horribly wrong on our trip on the TransAm just so I can call it an adventure – far from it.  But inevitably, something will start to go south.  As long as I can hold onto this outlook on life, these less than awesome moments on the trip will be just another moment when an adventure starts to unfold.

So who am I outside of my outlook on the adventures of life – I was born just east of San Francisco and shortly after that, my family moved to Dublin, California, where we lived until just after my 13th birthday.  We moved to Indianapolis, Indiana in 1994 when my dad was transferred for his job with United Airlines.  Indiana was a culture shock when we arrived, and 18 years later, still is sometimes.  So, if you’ve done the math, I’m 31 (32 by the time we begin the trip).  I work for a major financial services company in Procurement – sourcing things like credit bureaus, express shipping, and office supplies.

I live in the suburbs of Indianapolis, IN with Mel, my wife of just over a year now – I’ll let her talk about herself in her bio.  We have a small zoo consisting of 2 dogs and 4 cats.  We love travel, music, history, biking, nature, and animals.  I’m on the board of two non-profit organizations – one a professional purchasing organization; the other is an animal rescue that also takes dogs out into the community to help children with reading (  Mel and I also started up Indy Live Music ( a couple of years ago, but haven’t had much time to devote to it lately.  It is certainly a labor of love, and we squeeze in concerts when we can nowadays.

So if it sounds like I’m a pretty busy person, that’s true.  I’m loathe to admit that maybe I’ve taken on a bit too much over the last couple of years, so I won’t J  2013 will mark my 10th year in the conventional, Corporate America, full-time workforce, and sometimes I’m not sure how people make it to retirement without revolting!  While I do have a great career and work with great people, I’ve always had a bit of an entrepreneurial spirit.  What better time to get out and really experience life and have time to contemplate possibilities than when I’m still young enough to make those dreams come true.?  Remember that line that goes something like “I have seen your nine to fives wash away your dreams”?  There’s so much truth to that statement, and I want to make sure that doesn’t happen to us.

I'm also kind of a nomad at heart.  As Mel can attest to, I will try to pack in as many destinations and sights as possible on our vacations (which leads to many, many long hours in the car).  I still view the world as I did when I was a kid - as something new and exciting, with so many things to experience, so it's VERY difficult to talk me into taking any sort of relaxing trip.  In fact, on our trip to launch Looking Out Across America at Raise the Roof, I ended up turning our "vacation" into a whirlwind of 4,000 miles of driving in 11 days, covering a lot of ground between Seattle and San Francisco!  I've been told that our next trip WILL NOT play out the same way...  So, you see, being on the move for 3 months straight next year will suit me just fine!

As you can see, this excursion means a lot to us, and we wanted to translate that into something that meant a lot to a bigger group of people.  Taking what was once just a 3 month vacation involving two people on a lonely cross-country bike ride and turning it into something as big as Looking Out Across America will allow it to change and touch many more lives than just our own.  We’re thrilled to be partnering with the Looking Out Foundation, Brandi Carlile, and Again Today, and can’t wait to see what the summer of 2013 has in store for us!

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