Where do you get your ideas for your next travel adventure?
It’s fascinating to backtrack to where the inspiration for a journey originated – perhaps from Bill Bryson’s books, National Geographic’s photos or Anthony Bourdain’s cuisine.
I’ve written before about how my love affair with Chicken Kyiv and an affinity for the cheap seats on a Monopoly board lead to some fantastic voyages. My travel ideas seem to come from unexpected sources. In this case, the inspiration happened when I stumbled across a photo of 5-year-old me in a cowgirl outfit!
My childhood heroes were cowboys and cowgirls from Saturday morning TV and old B-Movies. I knew the names of all their sidekicks and horses; my favorite stars were the ones who could carry a tune. I would harmonize along with Roy Rogers and Dale Evans when they crooned “Happy Trails” at the end of each action-packed (well, for those days) adventure.
So thinking about cowboys, I started singing and humming all their old songs … for days … on end. Just ask James. Finally, I realized that one song kept popping up because it had been performed by so many artists.
By now you’re probably wondering what in the world was the song that had me going. It was “Down Mexico Way” – first popularized by the king of the “singing cowboys,” Gene Autry in 1939. Over the years it has been sung by diverse artists from Sam Cooke and Frank Sinatra to Willie Nelson at the 2013 New Orleans Jazz Fest.
Tomorrow we’re heading for romance … South of the Border, Down Mexico Way.
What about you. Where do you get your inspiration for your next trip?
P.S. Gene Autry was born Orvon Grover Autry, and his horse’s name was Champion. (He actually had several versions of Champion!) 🙂 Amazing!
1. By Seattle Packing Company-Bar-S Brand via Wikimedia Commons