The Things I’ve Missed While Not Working

July 31, 2015 by John

I’ve been back at work leading bicycle tours in the Finger Lakes the past few weeks after a month plus of being on the road. I enjoyed our trip out west immensely, but as I’ve talked about before, it’s not a vacation, it’s a life we’re trying to lead, and a life without being in a fixed location has its challenges. Being back at work helped me to identify three things I’ve been missing while on our recent adventure.

  • Minimalism
  • Structure
  • Movement


It’s ironic that these things all could have been a part of the journey we’ve been on. When we traveled in New Zealand back in 2012, I managed just fine with only one carry-on size backpack that included both clothing and camping equipment. Now the entire back of our car barely seems able to contain the things we seem to think we need. It is yet another manifestation of my ongoing struggle with stuff.


Though it’s been nice to have days on end with no set agenda, I have missed having some structure to my days. While working bicycle tours my day is planned out almost to the minute from predawn until after dark. It has been nice to not have to suffer from decision fatigue during the past few weeks.


Yes, I ran 100 miles recently, but since that day and up until beginning work again recently, my level of physical activity had plummeted, leaving me cranky and irritable on more occasions than I care to admit. Being physically active is such an important part of staying sane for me and even on my days driving the van while working, there is still plenty of opportunity to use my body while moving guest’s luggage around, loading and unloading bicycles, and just generally running around trying to get things done.

So, I’ve been enjoying my time back at work. The minimalism, structure, and movement it provides is a welcome change from our last month on the road, plus the coffers need refilling to stock up for the next adventure. Hopefully, I can take some of these habits with me when we begin our travels again in August.

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