11th November
written by Hope

Where did the last 5 years go?

This is a question we’ve probably all asked ourselves, and I’m no exception. It’s not like life is an endless blur of uneventful days (at least not for any of the people I know)…in fact, it’s quite the opposite. Sometimes it seems like we do so many things and achieve so many goals that there’s no time left to savor the uneventful but sublime: a beautiful clash of textures on the street, a warm night in the city, Sunday with the New York Times crossword puzzle.

In the past 5 years I: went to art school for my second Bachelor’s degree (in graphic design) and graduated with high honors, opened and closed a business with two of my best friends, wrote two books with them, got married, finished an insane thesis project, started working part time with a graphic design studio while I was still in school, and lived in Oaxaca for a month while participating in an experimental art studio…all while maintaining my relationship and friendships. I list these things not as a resume, but more as a way of illustrating: I am burned out, people.

I’ve been living life fast; I am happy that I’ve not missed any opportunities these past few years, but now I wonder if that’s really true. I’ve envied friends who live life at a slower pace…sometimes it seems like they can get deeper, follow a train of thought right down to the last stop, and see all the stations and forks in the road on the way there. And to be clear, I don’t mean to misrepresent—Jeremy and I live a great life in San Francisco, full of challenges, richness, laughter, and beauty. It’s just that I wonder, and quite frankly, I worry, what if we never slow down? What kind of person, or parent, or wife, or friend would I be? I know how to get things done; I need to learn how to NOT get things done.

There are plenty of reasons why we shouldn’t leave our lives for a year. What about my career? What about starting a family? What about our family or friends? I can’t say that these are not concerns of mine, in fact, they’ve been on my mind quite a bit these past few days. I guess the answer is that I wouldn’t, or couldn’t, do this trip unless I really believed it would help me be a better designer, (eventual) parent, friend, sister, daughter, person.

So there it is. That’s why I travel…to find the time to pull out my camera when I see that beautiful clash of textures on the street, to read that book that’s been on my shelf collecting dust for the past 5 years, and to follow that train of thought down to the last stop…to be the caboose rather than the engineer.


  1. Laurie Hermann

    oh, Hope…I’m going to love this…Thank you for being so open and expressive…It will be as if we are ALL taking this trip! Love to you, Laurie

  2. Kara

    Woot! Woot! All aboard!
    We will miss you terribly but man, oh, man, love you dearly and you kiddos are going to have the ride of your lives.

    Keep some seats warm on that caboose for us, okee doke?

  3. ronaynay

    I wish you two health and happiness on your great adventure that lies before you.

    I look forward to hearing about your travels and only hope that it inspires me to do the same sometime soon (even if its only for a few months!)

    Maybe our paths will cross at some point this year….

  4. Jenster

    Along the way you will not loose sight of your friends because you will now have an open mind not clouded by the ambition our Bonita childoods seemed to nurture. You will start to see little things that will remind you of people you love. Like when I see a the color of red it reminds me of you Hope. And when you see that brilliant shade of ski pants purple somewhere in the world this year, you will smile and think of me!

  5. 22/11/2008

    You know it, sistahs! K and Ro, I’m keeping some seats saved for you on this ride. :) Laurie, thank you for all your wonderful comments, it’s like we’re even closer than we were back home! And Jen, you know I can’t think of anyone but you when I see electric purple! xox

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