by Janine Pettit
13 Jul 2015
Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;
Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim
Because it was grassy and wanted wear,
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,
And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way
I doubted I should ever come back.
I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I,
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
The road less traveled has within it the possibility of the ordinary becoming extraordinary. At least extraordinary to those who normally do the expected and stay within the margins that someone set up for them, possibly without their even knowing it. When we embark on a path which is not the presumed, we can count on being surprised and surprising others. The surprise however, is not what is on the road, but what we discover about ourselves when we take that road.
Very often when I am speaking at an event and talking with women who have heard about the Girl Camper movement, they let out a sigh and express a wish that they could do that too. I want to shout, “you can”! It’s not as if it is some kind of exclusive club with strict membership policies. Anyone can join and although so many express the desire, I am always amazed by the number of women who don’t join.
The least likely person to ever find herself as a Girl Camper would be my best friend and favorite travel buddy, Carol Thompson. I chose Carol to profile because I believe she personifies the “ordinary” woman who longs to explore another side of life, possibly in her own little house on wheels. Carol is the very personification of the extraordinarily “ordinary” woman. She is “everywoman.” She is extraordinary to us who know and love her, but ordinary in that she is what most women are; chief cook and bottle washer of their very own private domain.
Carol and I in our real life roles as mothers, wives, sisters, daughters, and best friends for over 30 years.