I am writing about Basswood’s adventures because I am proud of him. He started hitchhiking to see the world four years ago when he was just eighteen. When I was Basswood’s age I had an uncle and aunt that were missionaries at a college in Africa. They invited me to come and stay with them. I could have gone to college there at a price I could have afforded, and gotten a degree from a university here in the US because that college was affiliated with the US university, but I was too afraid of the unknown to go.
I am proud of all five of my children. I want to support all of them as they struggle through life. About six years ago when Logan was 18 he went and spent six months volunteering at some orphanages in Kenya and Uganda, Africa. He took lots of pictures, and the notes he sent back home tugged at my heartstrings. I spent my free time for a couple of years working on websites trying to promote orphanages. Logan still has a burning desire to help the poor in Africa. However, he has the same problem the rest of us have. As we get older, life swallows us up, and it gets harder to follow our dreams because now we have ever mounting responsibilities.
That is why I am trying to encourage Basswood as he travels around the world. He is trying to understand and learn from the people that he meets. He has told me several times the perceptions Americans have of the peoples of the rest of the World are totally warped by the news and movies we watch on TV. Then when Americans do leave the US we just go to tourist destinations. Basswood wants to meet the average person in the countries he visits; ones who have not been changed by interaction with lots of foreigners.
Is hitchhiking across Mexico dangerous? Probably, but then living anywhere these days is dangerous. We just all have our heads stuck in the sand. We want to believe that everything is just going to go on the way it is forever. People do not want to believe that the world can come crashing down around them. I remember telling someone that someday the United States will not be able to pay its creditors and will default on its loans. They replied, “That is impossible. Countries cannot go bankrupt.” I will tell you what is impossible: Paying back 19 trillion dollars is impossible! (Yes, the US debt is about that high now.)
I must say that I naturally am a “Chicken Little.” I am always afraid that the sky is falling. I have tried sheltering my children way too much. I am afraid that I did not even let my oldest, Jordan, live his dreams when he was younger and had the chance. It took me a long time to learn what birds know naturally… For our young to thieve in life, they have to leave the nest… I am still trying to figure out the best way to support my children in that.