This is a big month for me. The SFT resumes its travels AND I have an impending (significant) birthday. I’d like to take a moment to appreciate where I am at in life and where I’m headed.
A lot of folks ask me how I ended up riding my bike across the country. My answer always comes out as a series of rambling anecdotes rather than the alternative reply lingering in the back of my head: “Synchronicity“. This latter retort, of course, begs for an explanation.
It would take pages of writing to take you through the series of chance meetings and unexpected inspirations that I encountered to bring you to where I am today. Let me sum it up by saying that I jumped at each opportunity to connect with someone new and found a teaching moment in every interaction.
As my previous career as an elite nordic ski coach morphed into life as a graduate student, I found that my interests in youth wellness and health promotion intersected perfectly in the school food realm. I stumbled upon a fantastic internship with the Orfalea Foundation’s s’Cool Food Initiative in Santa Barbara CA that solidified this newfound passion. Then when graduation occurred concurrently with the peak of the recession and job prospects were dim at best, I turned inward and started to innovate. One fall morning during a trail run with my siberian husky Grizwald, I finally had my “aha moment”. Bikes, food, healthy kids, educate, inspire, learn, share, and adventure. The School Food Tour concept contained all of these components and so many more.
After countless phone calls, endless inquiries and hours upon hours of research, the SFT began to coalesce into what is has become today. I cannot overstate the essential contributions made by a few key players during the program development process. On August 19, 2011, the SFT officially hit the road. Now almost 3,000 miles into my journey I can safely say that this “resumé-builder” has become my life.
Once I arrive in Michigan this May I do not know where my career will take me. There are proposals in the works, but nothing concrete. All that I can hope for during this fantastic February is the chance to continue learning and opening doors until I find the one that sends me into the next wonderous phase of life. I will do my best to live up to the moniker given to me by a mentor: “The Queen of Synchronicity”.
Cheers and happy travels to you all. Enjoy your February!