From here to there: a tale of travel

“A journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step.” – Lao Tzu

Last year, I rediscovered my wanderlust.

Trips to multiple Midwest cities reminded me how much I enjoy traveling. The excitement of experiencing new scenery and customs. The incredible first bite of Sugarfire BBQ in St Louis before heading to LouFest, a 2-day music festival. Sampling the various beers from Sun King Brewery in Indianapolis at GenCon. Flying drones in Lincoln and exploring the Nebraska State Capital.

Relegated to my apartment for months as winter arrived, I devised a plan. After talking to my employer and realizing I could do my job from anywhere in the world, I decided when my lease expired, it was time to indulge my travel lust.

But rather than just play tourist in a town, I really wanted to experience it. Know the best dive bars. Find the local specialties. Investigate the music scene and bands that don’t get national recognition. Meet the locals that comprise these cities. Tell stories that others might miss in new and different ways. I decided to extend stays in my new cities for up to a month at a time, to really get to know the area.

There are hundreds of travel sites out there, what makes this one different? I plan to look at travel differently, adhering to my Midwest upbringing. For those that might be unfamiliar, here’s what that means. I’m frugal when I travel. You won’t read about me staying at fancy hotels unless some company comps them for me (in which case, I will fully disclose that information). That’s not my style. Staying at modest hotels, AirBnB’s or crashing on couches along the way. Same with restaurants. I may try a few nice places in town, but mostly will eat at places most people won’t get sticker shock. I do enjoy good beer and music, so a fair amount of articles about both will appear here.

I hope you join me on my adventures, and please feel free to provide feedback, either on this site, Twitter, Facebook,  or Instagram. You can also sign up for our newsletter for the latest. I love to chat with people online or in person if I’m in your town, so message me through this site or on social. Let me know your favorite haunts I should check out.

Jason is a writer and photographer. He has been published on, Beloit Daily News, The Capital Times Mashable and CNN. You can follow him on Twitter @The_Dean.

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