In Honor of My Dad: A World Adventure

LINK TO GoFundMe: http://www.gofundme.com/thewaywardvagabond Hallo! My name is Alexander, a 21 year old anthropology (technically archaeology) major who is looking for his niche in life. I'm a rather normal person; I love cats and dogs, even volunteered with the Humane Society; I have a knack with computers; I live with a couple of amazing housemates; ice cream is my love affair; and I enjoy spending my free time with a book. See, I'm a normal person! Oh, did I mention my life dream is to backpack around the world? I suppose that is not something most people dream of. Ha! However, this dream of mine is not just something I thought of today, there's a story I hope you will read so you can understand my motivation. I would not be the person I am today if it had not been for my amazing parents. It is thanks to their influence, their support, their encouragement, and most of all their love that has given me the courage to follow this dream of mine. However, this dream is not simply my own, it's also my father's. As long as I can remember my father has desired to travel the world. Much like me, he too has a horrible—or as I like to consider it, wonderful—case of wanderlust. From an early age of 2 or 3 my parents began taking me to Mexico where my father certified people to scuba dive. As I got older it was my dad who encouraged me to take risks and truly live. In these Mexican trips I dove off my first cliff, snorkeled with my dad in the coral reefs, and explored my first pyramid. It is thanks to these trips that I knew there was more to the world than what was in front of me in California, and it's what prompted my desire to become an archaeologist so I can help unravel the past to bring families together in future awe. My dad is my biggest hero, and my closest friend. When I was 12, my dad was on the verge of carrying out his dream to see the world. We packed up, sold our house in the suburbs, and moved onto a trimaran with the intent to sail around the world. Leaving from the Berkeley marina we were staying at in California, we began making our way down the coast making stops in Monterey, Morro Bay, Santa Barbara, Venice Beach, San Diego, and other ports along the coast. Due to family issues, the trip was cut short in Mexico where we had to turn around and head home. Going around Point Conception we got caught in a storm and my father was injured. With the aid of the Coast Guard we managed to get to San Louis Obispo, but the once in a lifetime journey had been cut short before it truly began. We moved, and the boat was sold. It's been 9, almost 10, years since his dream was cut down in its infancy, and now my dad suffers from multiple sclerosis, along with an assortment of other health issues that are stemming from the MS. My dad is still the most adventurous person I have ever met in my life, and still recollects on his past adventures with vigor, but his medical issues have taken their toll on his abilities. He can't make the journey he once dreamed of, but I can. This dream of mine isn't some wild whimsical wish that I created, it's a journey I have inherited from my dad. I want to go on this pilgrimage for him and complete what he always wanted to, and for me so I can find where I belong in the world. If you've read my tale I hope you can understand how meaningful this trip is to me, and my family. My parents are in full support of it, but simply can't afford to finance such a dream. Besides this being a goal I want to carry out for my dad and me, I believe it's also a chance for me to actually experience the various cultures I've been studying; it makes way more sense to actually experience something than reading about it, right? I have etched out a rough itinerary for my travels that takes me to Europe for a few months where I hope to look into various fields of archaeology that intrigue me—Roman, early Medieval, military revolution—to Africa where I would love to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro, a trek my father and I have always wanted to do together since seeing a documentary in Imax; and into Asia where I hope to experience a lush and drastically foreign cultures, festivals, and experiences! If there's anything you can do to help me in funding my dream, you would have my thanks, along with the appreciation of my family. Thank you for your time and positive thoughts. Namaste, and safe travels, Alexander