Assistant Sports Editor
I’ve seen it in the French countryside. I’ve been reminded of it in the fields of Germany. In Italy, I saw it’s hills. In Rio, I saw it’s lakes nestled at the base of it’s mountains. I’ve seen it’s moon reflect off of the Amazon River and I’ve seen it’s stars in Morocco.
I’ve traveled half the world, visited four continents and fourteen countries. I’ve seen the desert of Africa, the murky Amazon River, the European countryside and the heart of the Atlantic Ocean. But no matter where I go, I can always see Vermont.
It’s green mountains stretch across the world. It’s soft lakes are all over the planet. It’s sunsets and sunrises light up the entire globe. I thought that when I traveled the world I would see new sights and sounds. I have, but in each new vision I see my home.
In each new country I have seen the glories of Vermont. It’s beauty in each turn of the globe. I have felt it’s chills in Russia and it’s humidity in Brazil. I have seen the romance of twilight in Vermont on the Eifel Tower illuminated on a Paris night. I have seen its foliage in Ireland and heard its sweet country music while crossing the equator.
I’ve found Vermont in the heart of Ireland. I’ve seen the compassion from Vermonters show in the hearts of the Irish. I’ve seen it’s farms, I’ve seen it’s cattle and it’s produce. I’ve seen the hardworking Vermonters in the fields of Ireland, working their tails off to bring home a dollar.
I’ve seen the exhaustion of a hard days work on faces of men and women enjoying a beer to finish the day all over the globe. I’ve seen it’s adolescent optimism on faces of the children and teenagers in Morocco.
I’ve seen a Vermonters smile on the faces of Brazilian villagers in the rainforest. I’ve felt it’s care and love in a child’s hug. In Morocco, I’ve been housed and fed like I was still in the 802.
I’ve been stunned by the beauty of French mountains and German fields, and in every single picture I see Vermont, I see home. I may be thousands of miles away from it’s rolling hills but I still see home.
Growing up I thought I would always leave Vermont, I was meant for a big city. I couldn’t wait to leave. But then I saw Paris and was overwhelmed with its size. I saw Rio and saw its slums overtake its city center. The more of the world I saw, the more Vermont I picked out, and the more I realized Vermont is, and forever will be, my home.
I used to think that the cold was awful and I was destined for the warmer south. But now, the cold seems like a nice reprieve, but only in small portions. I thought having no one around was torture, that traveling twenty minutes to town was a trek. But now the piece and quiet will be welcomed with open arms, the drive to town paling in comparison to seven-hour bus rides and thirteen hour trains.
I used to think the green mountains were occasional prison bars, but now they are my gates to the world. Now, after seeing the world, I can proudly say I am a Vermoner (‘t’ excluded on purpose. If you’re from the 802 you’ll understand, otherwise I feel sorry for you).
Some people travel the world to find the world. They travel to see the sights, to experience the culture, to find new adventures. Don’t exclude me from that list of travelers, but as I traveled, I found myself. I found my home.
I found my family and friends, they are just waiting for me when I return. Vermont gave me the world, and the world gave me Vermont. I’m a ninth generation Vermonter, and I couldn’t be happier.