29 Responses to “Get Lost: mini-mission”


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  1. Amy

    YES. This is EXACTLY what I want to do, and living freely (not quite so much in the money sence..) and ‘getting lost’ is just what i’ve been up to since I broke up from uni for the summer. And just what I intend to do for the rest of my life.
    Surely there’s nothing more valuble in life than discovery and fun? (And love, of course. Oh and your health..)
    Thanks for the inspiration!

    • Courtney Carver

      Amy, all of those things go hand in hand. Love, discovery, fun and health. I am so glad you make getting lost a priority.

  2. I love this! Clear and simple. This has actually been my own focus for the week http://simplefaithfulopen.com/2011/06/28/go-anywhere/

  3. Wonderful post. It reminds me of my honeymoon in Italy. My wife and I spent three weeks off the beaten path, staying in inns and vineyards. Our favorite activity was “to get lost” on the way to the next meal. We simply wondered around, taking it all in, until we “found ourselves” sitting at an outdoor table of a tratoria. Only to get lost in the meal. Thanks for sharing this great story!

  4. As a B&B owner in a rather unknown region of Italy, I feel *especially* qualified to respond to this post :)

    Bear with me.

    First of all, I suggest, more often than advice is actually requested, that people turn off the GPS. Italy is probably the most ideal country to get lost in. Go into the hills. Scale the hairpin turns. Learn what it really means to drive a standard transmission and how important the emergency brake is in that process. Stop on the side of the road. If you must, go. The French call it “pee-pee rustique.” Yank off your bra. Take your eye off the travel guide and follow the dandelions into the vineyard. It helps if you bought some wine and cheese and bread beforehand. Because you can eat and drink them now. Lost.

    I also suggest buying. at an outdoor Italian market, what in my childhood was referred to as a mu-mu. Somehow mu-mus and vineyards and wine and cheese and bread work really well together.

    Mu-mu’s and bras aside, getting lost is one of the only things that we really have left to guarantee ourselves a memory that no one else can take home with them. Getting lost in Italy is what made me move here and buy a farm and risk life and limb to build a new life. In the process of getting lost is the promise of getting to know yourself anew.

    You will never, ever, ever find a more perfect place to get lost than in Italy. You can stay lost as long as you want, and then you can ask a little old lady on the side of the road what you should do. She’ll do everything she can to get you found again. So don’t worry.

  5. Debbie

    Loooove this! One of my dearest friends and I traveled together for years and we never really considered a trip a success until we had gotten lost (usually as a result of being lost in conversation!) One of the best places to get lost: Venice – you really have no choice, you have to just toss the map and submit to another piece of ageless wisdom – Let Go.

  6. Some of the best travel advice I’ve read in a long, long time!

  7. LOL! I went downtown in the city where I live this week and sort of “got lost”… I usually drive through downtown to get somewhere else, and rarely stop and walk around. Had one place I needed to go, the rest were on a whim as we were walking by, discovered a little grocery I had no idea was there (which was terrific because we were thirsty and needed a bottle of water!) and I went in a bead store I hadn’t been in for like 3 years. It was a fun little break. Though getting lost in Italy, that sounds fabulous and far superior! :-)

  8. Getting lost physically seems to allow yourself to be found spiritually. All those things, the conversation, the book, the pizza, someone’s eyes … all are about being in the present.

    I like it.

  9. This is one of the hardest things to do and one of the most valuable lessons in living. When I retired from nursing, I realized after a while, that I had not been wearing a watch,after year end surgery, I realized about March, I didn’t make up a yearly “to do” scheduled calendar. It is really very freeing.

    As a nurse, I lived by the watch, everything has to be timely and accurate. It is very freeing to be able to just “be” and “go with the flow”. I have my things I’ve always wanted to do, four mornings a week…with people I like and stress free with like minded people ….painting and a writing group. If I ever stop enjoying the times and people at those places, I’ll stop attending.

    Then a friend was chatting as we were walking, saying she wanted to explore the interior of Maine…being a sailor, she knew the coast, but not the towns and people.

    No one would go with her to Fort Kent, a town that has a check point to cross into Canada. I said, just let me know in the spring when you want to go. She did, and we had a wonderful time, impromptu stops, requesting a tour of a nursing home, stopping in a village that had just two weeks before had the coffee poisoned at a church coffee hour…she HAD to have coffee there.

    It has been fun to go on the impromptu trips with her…no adgenda. My friend says the fun thing to do is to pick up a local paper, check bulletin boards and see if there is anything local going on to attend…town meeting, church supper, play. Something local.

    Thanks for the post. A good reminder.
    Peace. Siggi in Downeast Maine, USA

  10. ha, what an interesting coincidence! I currently read “A Field Guide to Getting Lost” by Rebecca Solnit – a great book!

  11. George Stinson

    Thanks, wanna go with me next time?


  12. Funnily enough my husband (who never gets lost) got totally lost this week. We took a week in a mini camper and instead of ending up in the rainforest found ourselves following a road for an hour through herds of cows (and mountains of pats on the road) over a narrow bridge almost at the level of the river we were crossing, to a T intersection, where a local lad in a busted ute told us to turn around the road went nowhere…. we did end up at the rainforest and it was spectacular but we will still be telling stories about those few “lost” hours… until we get lost again.
    ciao Lisa

  13. PS my best girlfriend once gave me a sticker for my car which read “Don’t follow me I’m lost too!” – she knew me well…

  14. Thanks for this! I keep my own life simple by living aboard my sailboat rather than, you know, a house or something. The best part of traveling with your home is that being lost is seldom a problem, most of the time, it’s part of the goal. Thanks for pointing out the value in being “lost.” May I never be found!

  15. What a timely piece for me to be reading right now, as I am ‘getting lost’ in Sante Fe. Yes, I’m on vacation in New Mexico. I’m one that likes to schedule our activities for the day. My husband is the one who says,
    relax and let’s see where it takes us.
    I actually just checked my email for the first time in 3 days – good for me. And I opened up your most apropos posting. Thank you.

  16. Great spin on the idea of getting lost. I really dislike getting lost unless it’s lost in conversation. My job and kids appetite/sleep needs seem to require great time management. It’s great when I have a day with nowhere planned to go and no time commitments to get to. I can do whatever/whenever in my own home, when I make an intention and give myself permission.

  17. I love getting lost in cities with little nooks and cranny’s. You never know what you might find! My favourite was Venice. We gave up the map and found so many great little shops and side alleys with beautiful photo opportunities. Definitely great advice.

  18. I just did this very thing. I needed to get out of town and be away from my friends due to the big changes going on in my life (divorce). My mission was to go to England for 12 days by myself and get lost. I did have some things planned out since I was meeting some friends in the canals of Northern England. But I had no definite plans of how long I would stay (I stayed the whole time). I had some train tickets bought. London was going on whatever I felt like for the day. I did have a London A to Z book and tube (subway) map (this came in handy when alot of the tube was shutdown for repairs), but I didn’t always use it or understand it. I went on this walking tour and met a great couple from Seattle. They adopted me and we went on a mission to find Abbey Road, which was a total adventure. It was such a rewarding experience and one that I plan to do again next year (only this time, South America or Thailand). I came back relaxed and ready to deal with everything.

    And I have been getting lost in emails to a friend…oh and the The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo books. I’m about to start the third one.

    So, this is the best advice I can give to anyone. Just get lost. Who cares?! Just make sure to keep people posted if you are going solo so they know you are alive.

  19. It always fun to get lost in a great book. Books are an escape from reality and can bring you somewhere life sometimes CANT. Reading is like water to the earth. It’s necessary for GROWTH!

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