Badfish Who?

I left home the first time riding my tricycle–with a peanut butter sandwich tied to the back of my bike–when I was four years old. My parents found me beside Interstate Route 40, too afraid to cross, and eating my peanut butter sandwich. All I wanted to do for the rest of my life was to follow that road wherever it was going. Or follow that path. Or walk down that alley just to see where it went.

I left home the second time in a ’56 Chevy coupe with a V-8 engine and glass pack mufflers. I was a little-better prepared, but still carrying peanut butter sandwiches in the cooler. I turned west on Route 40 and drove all the way to Santa Monica. And I’ve been ‘moving on’ ever since. I’ve lived in a dozen states (visited all but 4 states), and I gave up counting visas after sixty countries in my passports.

I’ve been collecting sunsets and avoiding dysentery for years now, decades actually. And I’ve been taking photographs of places and people in various locales. I’ve got stacks of notebooks full of thoughts and traumas. I’ve got boxes full of 35mm slides, and external hard drives, and stacks of notebooks filled with notes and stories of my journeys. I always thought I’d end up writing a book and displaying my photographs in it, but I do not seem to possess the discipline it takes to actually sit your butt down long enough to write the thing.

So if you like what you read, or like the photographs you see here at Badfish and Chips Cafe, that will make my life of vagabonding all worthwhile. Things are always just what they are. Sometimes, as they like to say, you have to go with the flow, and be happy with what is.

This is what is today: I’ve been living out of the USA for the past 16 years; I’m currently basing my journeys, and life,  in Abu Dhabi with hair turning gray — still roaming, still gandering down strange paths, still eating peanut butter sandwiches.

297 comments

  1. Hi, thanks for stopping by and following my photo and travel blog. After reading a couple of your posts, I found I will enjoy reading your future entries, I am sure. I like your sense of humor! I hope you continue to follow and enjoy my photos.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ha! Yeah, I think I had way more guts at four than I do these days. Or was it simply a lack of fear…because what is there to fear at four years old? Hmmm. What are you flying in in your photo?

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  2. Thank you so much for following. I have the same problem about the book thing. I really should master the discipline it takes to sit on my butt to write mine, too 🙂 Ain’t nothin’ wrong with peanut butter sandwhiches-I eat them quite often, myself 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I’m so glad you stopped by my blog, which led me to yours. I love the photo of Duncan. It’s the first time I thought of a crab as ‘cute’ he even looks friendly. You are quite an adventurer, I thought we had moved around a lot but you beat us hands down. Looking forward to more of your lovely posts. Cheers.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I ran away at age 2.5 years–trailing my mom to the grocery store because she left before fastening me in my sunsuit. Amazingly, I followed the correct route–about 1 mile from home–until somebody stopped me. Now I cannot go down the street without my GPS!

    Liked by 2 people

  5. What a great style of writing you have! Maybe one day you’ll grab a peanut butter sandwich and write that book! Thanks for following and leading me towards your site, I’m glad I found it. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Hey, Badfish. Your ears must burn. You’ve caught a couple of compliments by other bloggers on my site. Thanks again for following. Via your site, I’ve met some fun/fascinating bloggers who write with depth and creativity.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I love your 4 year old runaway story. It was a sign of things to come; great that you were paying attention. Not sure how you got to “Old Soul”( how strange is this WordPress phenomena), but so grateful that you did. Thanks for the like and follow. I’ll be checking out your blog. Intrigued ! Van

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  8. There’s much to be said for a life objective that involves avoiding dysentery. When I lived in Africa it just kept homing in on me. Thanks for the follow btw. I’m reciprocating. It was the fact that you have jars of different desert sand in the photo in your latest post that swung it for me :). Seriously, though, you have a v. interesting blog, and as I seem to have given up my travelling/expat days, it’s good to read about yours.

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    • Tish…well, welcome to the party. And I’m so glad you liked the sand in the jars! Cheap decoration. And thanks for stopping by and commenting. Dysentery…not for sissies.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Hey Badfish! I love your travel story…I share some of that passion myself, though I have a long way to go. I’m thrilled that you are following my blog. Do come by again. Happy travels, my friend!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Mind? Wow, I love it. Thank you so much. I’m honored, but I won’t lie, it may take a while before I write the post!! But I will when “life stuff” allows. Thanks again.

      Liked by 2 people

      • You’re very welcome :)!!! And don’t worry – see how long it took me to finally sit down and write it ;)? I’m sure it’s ok and no SWAT team or so will end up in front of one’s home if you don’t write the post within the next few minutes 😉 Enjoy writing it 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  10. I also left home on a tricycle the first time! I was a year about two years older though and I didn’t have the foresight of packing food. My neighbour found me half an hour out of town, peddling frantically trying to reach the next village! I had forgotten about that, thank you for reminding me of the adventure that lives within! Looking forward to reading about your adventures!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Tricycles rule. You know, now you’ve got me thinking about that first trip. I started off with my friend, Bobby. But he got scared a few blocks from home. And turned back. I traveled on alone. Wow. Memory is a funny thing. Thank you for the jolt.

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  11. Let’s trade lives – yours sounds like one I would have LOVED to have lived (next life, perhaps?)

    My Dad was a military scientist, so I moved (um, was dragged) around practically every single year I lived in my parent’s home – but that’s not exactly the same thing as traveling and visiting under my own steam. I have actually been in (or been driven through) all 50 states, but my dream of traveling the world has fallen victim to other dreams.

    Thanks for allowing me to live vicariously through your blog.
    xx,
    mgh
    (Madelyn Griffith-Haynie – ADDandSoMuchMore dot com)
    – ADD Coach Training Field founder; ADD Coaching co-founder –
    “It takes a village to educate a world!”

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ha! Military brat. I lived in a town with a military base, had many friends who had to leave. You were dragged to Hawaii? How’d you get to Alaska? I really want to see Alaska…in summer. Dreams change and some become not dreams, and some take the place of others. It’s all good. We can’t all be irresponsible.

      Liked by 1 person

      • NOPE – I went to Hawaii and Alaska as an adult (my Alaska story is a hoot – in retrospect – but being stuck in Fairbanks when an acting job turned out to be a prostitution ring, hiding out during pipeline Alaska, was not much fun in the moment).

        Hawaii was amazing, however. Had I not JUST moved to New York with Broadway dreams, I might never have returned.

        I was dragged around the country during my childhood (changing schools every year of my life until High School) – and we almost always combined moving with a car trip, visiting states on the way to our new “temp” home while the moving truck took care of getting the stuff there (lol – for years I thought “vacation” meant relocating!)

        We never lived on base, so always being “the new kid” wasn’t normalized as it might have been if we had. I wish more parents would think about the impact on their kids when they relocate – especially ADD/EFD kids. It leaves deficient long-term relationship skills in its wake without some parental guidance. Though I was outgoing enough to practically have a “Hi, I’m the new kid” ACT by the fourth grade! (which has given me some advantages in adulthood), I wonder how the shy kids fared — and it took DECADES to understand how to keep relationships going when they didn’t end after a year.

        Yep – dreams change – and some dreams must be given up on as life goes on – the fact that we never got that bicycle for Christmas fades, right? (at least, it does if we’re mentally healthy). STILL hoping to travel the world however – and to become multi-lingual.

        xx,
        mgh

        Liked by 1 person

        • Jeesh, you write comments as interesting as your blog posts. And almost as long! Yeah…I guess we all can look back at our childhood and wonder what might have been different. You sound like you turned out OK. Have you posted the story of the Alaska “acting” job? I would love to hear that story!
          I looked up SCAC…there are many choices. I’m supposing you are a member of the South Cerney Angling Club?
          Are you saying you never got a bike? No…no. That’s just not right. I set few goals, but one is to speak Spanish fluently. I have a vocabulary, never learned tenses, so I speak in present tense, and must sound very odd…but I can get to a toilet and order tacos and ceveche and cervesa.

          Liked by 1 person

          • We could speak Spanish together – the eternal NOW in a whole new venue.

            I ordered several “years” of Pimler (in Spanish, French and Italian), but spending the time to work with them hasn’t moved to the top of my very long To-Do list yet. (2014 was horrible and I’m still playing serious catch up).

            Nope – not a fisherperson – check out the l-o-n-g version of my About Me for what all my initials stand for. I ALSO haven’t posted my Alaska story (it would take a novel to do it justice!) – and yes, I do tend to be wordy.

            I have always said, “If you want the long version you can have it practically immediately – the short version may take a few weeks (or months).”

            Yes, I did get a bike eventually, just not the Christmas surprise I asked Santa for several years in a row when I was little.

            Speaking of long – there’s a blog article I need to finish and post. G’nite.
            xx,
            mgh

            Liked by 1 person

          • senorita (o es senora, si?), all good. I’m trying to redo my blog, undo some of the things I did when I first started blogging and started to set things up on the site.

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          • Yeah, I can’t write in Spanish on my laptop either, but I can do Arabic. And right…CSS. Scary stuff, that. I guess I’m not sure what the difference is, or what you can do with CSS…therefore, scary.

            Liked by 1 person

    • Prasna, thank you so much for the nomination. It means a lot coming from you…Ms Creativity! I do not have a no award policy, I’m honored you find my blog interesting enough to read, and nominate!!! Thanks so much. Being a master procrastinator, it may take me some time to get around to actually doing the “rules” stuff…don’t be holding your breath! And thanks so much again.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Now here’s a verrry delayed reply so you don’t have worry about timeline, I am glad you accepted it. Take all the time you need and I humbly overwhelmed to accept the title “Ms Creativity” :), I enjoy reading your adventures and you very well deserve this recognition. Have a happy weekend !!!

        Liked by 1 person

    • Whoa. Thanks so much. Coming from you that means a lot! I’ve thought about travel writing, can’t imagine I’m not doing that. But life got in the way.

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  12. Just came across Natalie Goldberg’s take on memoir. Great mindset on creativity. Practical with some eastern thought thrown in. There is a great recording of one of her workshops. You would enjoy it.

    https://www.scribd.com/audiobook/237977348/The-Art-of-Writing-Memoir

    She also wrote Writing down the Bones–smart, no-nonsense look at the writing process. You might have fun skimming that.

    William Zinsser wrote a solid book on memoir. Google and you will find his website, etc. He wrote a blog–received an award for it when he was 89.

    FYI–not saying you need a tutorial at all. However, I find these books to be wonderful reminders about good writing.

    Liked by 1 person

      • Yes…there is not enough hours in the day:)))) I really don’t want this project to become a pressure…you can share one of your regular post that you think syncs in with the theme:) I’ve created this challenge to be a source of inspiration, so use it when you want to and share your work when you can:) See you at the exhibit:)

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  13. G’day, I’m glad you are coming along for the ride. Hope not to disappoint you. I thought your bio is a ripper and I wish I was a voluntary gadabout in my youth. Too bloody late now really.
    Hoo roo for now.

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  14. Hi badfish,
    Great bio! Came over for a peak after Debbie mentioned your procrastination in Spaceship China. Didn’t expect to become a follower, but after a bio like that – I’m hooked.

    As I’m one of those late in life travellers, hoping to gain some insight from your stories.

    All the best, Saf.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Saf, yeah, if Debbie knows one thing, it’s that I have an issue with procrastination. I’m taking it, you might also…or you like to hear about other people’s issues with it? Anyway, welcome aboard and thanks for hanging out with us!

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  15. On the flip side, when you finally have the discipline to get your book going….you will be missing on the experiencing all those wonderful adventures and seeing y’all the beauty you have.

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  16. Strangest thing. I thought I was already following your blog. I’ve rectified the little mix up, but I’m so glad you stopped by and commented tonight. 🙂 Set off my little, “Wait, Rachael. What are you missing?” alarm. 🙂

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  17. Funny how many of us there are with that need to see past the next corner. It’s something my family and friends have never understood and probably one of the reasons why I blog. And I know just what you mean about that book! Unlike you I’ve never done much flying by the seat of my pants, though, so I’m mildly envious. Maybe even a lot! Nice meeting you, anyway 🙂

    Like

    • Heys guys…thanks so much Tab and Cam. I know some people don’t like awards, but I LOVE them. I guess I really do have an ego, or some hidden desire to be liked? I ACCEPT!!! Of course. But it may take a little while to fully respond in a post! Even badfish have responsibilities!!! Thanks again

      Liked by 1 person

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