14 December 2007

Everyone likes a good story...

Photo by Cody Smart

So what's a 22 year-old, well-educated, eagle scout, former NCAA track and field athlete to do when he graduates and finds himself stuck in the mundane existence of "popular society" with no real optimism for the future? Probably a lot of different things cross your mind. Hitchhiking across America probably wasn't one of them. But that's exactly what Cody Smart did.

In July of 2006, I was sick of the northeast and needed to go. I quit my job and hitched west on I-84 with $430 in my bank account. I spent the next few months on the road, interacting with a peculiar lot of fascinating people (the likes of whom I never would have met with conventional travel). I spent endless rides with red-blooded truckers, lived with homeless people in California, traveled with a fugitive in Louisiana, and worked with fishermen in Alaska. Along the way, I got to hear wild tales and shrewd insights from the mouth of the vast cross section of America that still picks up hitchhikers.
Read the rest of his captivating story here, where he recounts his journey in prose and picture -- both of which are equally stunning!

What is it about a story like this
that just grabs (and holds) our attention?


miller said...


i think the thing we love about stories like this is they speak to that visceral part of us that wants to do something adventurous. there is a part of each of us that longs to be an Abraham or a Moses or a David or...

these stories resonate with us because they're proof that the things we are afraid to do can, in fact, be done.

so we read them and revel in the joy of knowing someone unplugged from the matrix and lived...

unfortunately, reading about it is enough for most of us.

i think its time we all gained the experience needed to write this type of story.

it probably won't be a "hitch-hiker" story, but it will be a story of adventure... whether its loving an orphan or a widow, giving up a chunk of life to discover life is what's really necessary for this kind of story.

it's closer than we think...

it's easier than we thing...

love and respect!

Tim said...

i think deep down we all connect with the theme of 'journey.'

mankind... all mankind is on some sort of spiritual journey... we are spiritual people, by nature.

but anyway - i connect with the journey theme.

back in the day i had two chances to drive out west... we purposefully went off the interstate and traveled old rte. 66. the imagery... the feeling... i will never forget.

cody's story reminds me of Chris McCandless... the guy in which the book/movie Into the Wild is written about.

that book still is resonating with me.

somewhere, the Prodigal Son story connects with all of us... if that isn't a story of journey - i don't know what is.

Anonymous said...

I think its how God is always speaking in unexpected ways, at unexpected times, through unexpected people. The question is...are we listening?

troy. said...

Yeah...I agree with each one of you. Listening closely and then giving up your "rights" in order to fully engage in the journey He has laid before us.

I yearn for a story like this of my own. And that's when courage, trust and all those other God-given attributes kick-in.