How to move from Point A to Point B

There is this delightful notion from Douglas Pagels:

Some of the secret joys are not found by rushing from Point A to Point B, but by inventing some imaginary letters along the way.

Photo by Zac Ong on Unsplash

My son, Jeremy, and daughter-in-law, Denise, travel in a 30′ Airstream when they’re working across the U.S. But when they book international work, I’m called in to grand-dog-sit a little Brussels griffon named Chloe.

It’s always a fun assignment because it involves a mini-vacation in a gorgeous location (these past two weeks in Cascade Locks on the Columbia River) with uninterrupted writing time.

While my son and daughter-in-law hurried off to Point B in Ireland—because this is the season of their lives in which they’re working long hours to build a successful business—my grand-dog, Chloe, and I invented several imaginary letters between A and B.

We visited the historic lodge at Multnomah Falls …

Multnomah Falls with grand-dog (photo: fellow tourist)

… and marveled at the single-handed sailboats, sternwheelers, and kite boarders on the Columbia River.

Kite boarding on the Columbia (photo, Marlys)

At the campground, I met a new friend, Kristi. She and I hiked up to Dry Creek Falls. Where it happened to intersect the Pacific Coast Trail, we detoured so we could say we hiked part of the PCT. Because who wouldn’t want to make that claim?

On the Pacific Crest Trail (photo by Kristi)

Kristi is an early-retiree, traveling across the country six months of the year in a tiny 16’ Airstream.

Which gave me pause. Could I do something like that? What size trailer could I tow and live in long-term?

When I met Jeremy and Denise at the Portland Airport, our conversation turned to Airstream living. Daughter-in-law Denise pulled out her phone and found a nearby dealership.

And so we made a detour, toured through several lot models, and determined that I could live full-time in a 23- or 25-foot Airstream.

If my Point B is to get published, could I travel across the Pacific Northwest inventing imaginary letters along the way while continuing to write full-time? 

Yes, please.

While putting in the long hours, Jeremy and Denise incorporated sight-seeing into their Ireland schedule.

Even during crazy busy times in our lives, we can—and should—invent fun, and memories, and times of refueling on our way from Point A to Point B.


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  1. Wendy Archer

    You are so right (as usual). I too look at the journey as a whole – point A, point B, and all the little points in between. To me the journey in between A and B is just as important as the destination – it is all part of the trip (and sometimes has been even better than the destination!). As always, thank you for reminding me of this Marlys. Happy travels to you, whatever journey you make. Hugs.

    • Well said, Wendy: “ … the journey in between A and B is just as important as the destination … (and sometimes has been even better than the destination!).” Thank you for weighing in with your insight!

  2. Wendy Archer

    Forgot to say, Chloe is adorabubble. You are one lucky grandma, and she is one lucky pooch :*)

  3. Grace Lawson

    Thank you as always, Dear Marlys, for your incredible news and now those most awesomely beautiful pictures you took !!! I know you want to do God’s will so may He show you what that is as you follow His leading !!!

  4. Peter

    Thinking of travelling between point A to join B, is OK as a starting point but ‘don’t you just love to think’….about what might happen, what you may see and it’s all there for you to take in and cherish. I’ve often been heard to say amongst a cycle group, ‘Let’s stop and smell the roses’, it’s only then that you can have this expression mean what you want it to mean. I’m thinking now of the 3 rainbows, one on top of the other as we drove out onto the moors and wondering whose garden it stopped in!!!!!… it was there for us to cherish. May be I wasn’t supposed to know that the old steam train ‘Sir Nigel Gresley’ was going to be running on the Northern Line, but there she was in such splendour as she chugged on her way, all ‘blessings indeed’. Thanks again Marlys, for sharing. God Bless, Bx P & family.

  5. Bre

    Are you visiting an airstream dealership?!?! I could definitely see you adventuring and writing. I’ll come visit you along your way sometime!!

    • Yes, Bre! My son and daughter-in-law took me to a dealership in the Portland area and we stepped inside several different models. If I do this thing, I would love to have you visit!

  6. Mary Kittelson

    Hi Marlys, I continue to read and love your writing, your life. Carl and I continue to full-time RV, our home is where our wheels are, at present: Bullhead City, AZ overlooking the Colorado River. So, you are getting a taste of the nomad life! There are so many reasons why we love it, are into our 6th year, believe it or not.

    • Overlooking the Colorado River – I’m jealous, Mary. And glad it’s worked so well for you and Carl for this long. Good for you two!

  7. Dear Marlys,

    You have inspired me after reading two blog posts! Please drive your airstream up to Newburyport to visit!!

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