Finding Freedom in Historic Concord, the place of the Revolutionary War and birthplace of America. I love to travel because I love to discover myself, who I am, what I want, and declare my freedom to pursue my dreams in each place that I experience. There is no better place to seek out finding freedom in historic Concord, but perhaps not for the reasons that you think.
I was visiting my dear friend, M, in Boston. We were sipping coffee at The General Store, and talking about how far we have come in the last five years. My first real plane ride was to Jamaica on my honeymoon, and M was always afraid to travel by herself until we went to Las Vegas together on a girls’ trip a few years ago. Between our first trip together to Las Vegas and later meeting up in Massachusettes in 2018, I racked up over 100 round-trip flights to my name. The day before I arrived in Boston, M just flew alone back from Brazil on a 15-hour flight.
There is something to be said for finding your own identity and not be defined as belonging. The irony was not lost on M and me as we walked the paths through the historic place of the Revolutionary War. Finding freedom can mean many different things.
Before meeting each other when we lived across the street from each other:
- M was afraid of flying and did not know how to pay a taxi driver
- I had no clue how to drive in a city
It was a big brave moment for us when I grabbed her that night of a Flamingo and announced, “we will be best friends forever” (alcohol was involved) we had no idea that five years we would be traveling to Vegas together our own.
It Started with Las Vegas, of All Places
Since that night, we talked about going to Las Vegas one day. No one, including us, ever thought it would happen.
- We ended up talking to an arms dealer for hours at a bar, getting advice about our lives. Looking back, probably some of the best life advice we have ever gotten. Some of his advice we listened to, some we should have listened to. The main thing we took away from this conversation: don’t ever try to be someone else other than yourself. There is something to be said talking to someone who has absolutely nothing to prove.
- We may, or may not, have gotten matching tattoos from Vince Neil’s Tattoo Parlour at 10 AM (alcohol was not involved). This event was inspired by the “be who you are” that carried a battle cry of “you can’t tell me what to do”. Some may have thought we would regret this later. This tattoo is still one of my proudest moments. I can only personally speak for my experience of being involved in a serious, physically abusive, and sexually abusive relationship; this gave me the empowerment to reclaim my body back.
- We may have gotten lost and walked the streets of Vegas barefoot at 3 AM. It’s a painful lesson that wearing heels to look good may just result in suffering later.
- We were mistaken for Australian actresses. Entirely separate story and post for another day.
- There was general amazement at the VIP lounges we were able to visit, mostly by M telling the bouncer, “Let me in there” (and he did). Here’s where we learned the lesson about confidence.
- Everything else which I will deny it happened.
Why is this important? Because it all goes back to understanding who you are, what you want, and the confidence to go for it. My first performance review at work in the career I hold now, 17 years ago, my boss told me that I needed to be better at standing up for myself and pushing back. People who know me now would find that hard to believe.
We were young and stupid. It was one of those trips you make with your friend when you’re young and stupid. The kinds of trips you make to have stories to tell when you’re old. Trips that you don’t regret, but would have regretted if you hadn’t gone.
Fast forward several, several years. The number of years where your life has completely changed. We are no longer living across the street but on opposite sides of the country. Now we each have new careers, brand new lives. We chased those dreams we talked about doing “one day” while we were in Las Vegas. After not seeing M for several years, I flew out to visit her in Massachusettes in her small New England town, and seeing Concord was on our list of things to do.
Here’s where it gets interesting. Everyone expected we would come back with crazy tales of wild escapades like we did in Vegas. Here’s the thing, when you have real confidence and know who you are, what you want, and what you need, you don’t need to prove that to anyone. You strike out on your own; you create your freedom to be yourself. We once again found that spirit of “You Can’t Tell Me What To Do.” What better place than the home of the Battle of Lexington and Concord. The start of the American Revolutionary War?
Different Reasons for Travel
This was our journey of finding freedom in historic Concord. I think we all find this quest to seek who we are if there’s More To Life, that push that gives us the freedom to explore, see, feel, and be. Sometimes you have to fight for what you want and who you are. You define you. And this trip, we know who we are, and more importantly, we are proud of the confident women we’ve become. We traded bar stories for historical tours. Instead of dance floors and clubs, we hiked Walden Woods. We went in search of stories of those fighting to be on their own, defining themselves. So off to Concord, we went to have dinner, take it all in, and celebrate our history and who are today.