Last week I wrote about Kilimanjaro in pop culture and the likely influence that pop culture had in my desire to climb Kili.
There is another pop culture reference that does not mention Kilimanjaro explicitly, but which I think bears greatly. That is, believe it or not, Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure!
No, the Roaming Parkers do not aspire to be time-travelling slackers, but something that Bill S. Preston, Esq. and Ted “Theodore” Logan are always saying resonates with us. That is, they frequently exhort each other to, “Be Excellent!”
We are trying to set an precedent for ourselves and for others – especially our children. An example of aiming for the stars instead of settling for mediocrity. An example of being eagles instead of turkeys!
Like all parents we feel like our kids are amazing and special and talented. They have so much potential that we want them each to understand deep down inside that they can do and be and accomplish anything in the world that they set themselves to.
We don’t think that is a message that we can communicate to them while sitting in a recliner watching TV and eating Cheetos. That’s why the Roaming Parkers are all about –
- Travel – As Mark Twain said, “Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, … Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one’s lifetime.”
- Outdoor Adventure – Adventure is a built-in drive for people but I think it largely has to take place outdoors because that forces an interaction with the real world on its own terms the way it really is, as opposed to the passive, sedentary, virtual online and the service/knowledge economy.
- Conservation – Once you begin travelling and interacting with the real world through outdoor adventure, you cannot help but notice problems with the way things are being managed and you begin to think in terms of conservation, stewardship, and sustainability.
- Food – Food is one of the most important parts of the Human experience, and it fits right in with travels, in which you get to see and try different cultural foods. Food also fuels your outdoor adventures and ideas of conservation and sustainability can easily be applied to personal diet in which we grow and cook and eat as healthily as we can.
We want our kids to have the immediate, visible example of their parents, happy with their lives, loving each other, engaged with the world, living their dreams, and striving to be excellent at something!
We are trying to be worthy of being an example to our kids and we are trying to make them worthy of being an example to their peers.
Kilimanjaro is the biggest tangible example that we can think of to make that point. The expense (not just monetary) and the logistics are as daunting as the actual trek. It is a huge outdoor adventure that involves as much travel as just about any other adventure on the planet, and it also touches upon the conservation and food niches (more on that in later articles).
So Kilimanjaro is right in line with what the Roaming Parkers are and what we want to grow up to be because Kilimanjaro is Excellent!