#indie30 Day 2: Child Detectives Sent Me Overseas

Day 1 of BootsnAll’s #indie30 Project was a big ol’ success around Glorious Curious headquarters: my post and tweet were favorited, retweeted, commented on, and reblogged by the splendid members of the BootsnAll community–and Glorious Curious gained several new followers! Many thanks to all of you who looked so kindly on my writing–your interest and support are so greatly appreciated!

Day 2 tries to pin down the inciting event that made you decide that you were going to be a traveler:

When, where, what, and with who is the story of your travel origin?

I decided I would be a traveler because of five fictional children and their jet-setting adventures.

I was six years old–my hair in pigtails, my nose in a book, and my mom and dad had subscribed me to The Happy Hollisters book club. The Hollisters were five brothers and sisters who solved mysteries with the help of their perfect parents, and every month, they and their adventures were delivered directly to my house by our mailman, who dutifully handed over a small brown box bearing a label addressed to me. To me!

One month I tore open the eagerly awaited box to find The Happy Hollisters and the Punch and Judy Mystery nestled inside. There on the dust jacket were the siblings, cobblestones underfoot, mountains in the background, Italian flag hanging from a puppet theatre where a masked figure of Punch was cavorting. This particular escapade, I realized, took the Hollisters to Italy.



I had traveled out of the country before–every summer, my parents and my sister and I flew off to northern Quebec to visit my mother’s family. But the Hollisters were crossing an ocean. They were staying in hotels. That was something else again. I headed straight for the couch and began turning pages.

I’m sure the story was perfection for a six year-old. But here’s the funny thing: I remember almost nothing about it. What I do remember, what I clearly remember thinking as I read that book, was this:

It takes an airplane 8 hours to fly from JFK to Rome. You fly overnight. You wake up in Italy. I will do that when I grow up.

And I did. And the first time I did it, I actually thought of the Hollisters as I boarded the plane. And the grown-up me grinned at taking the travel dream of the pigtailed, bookish, six year-old me and making it real. The story was no longer a story–it was my life.