Stay Adventurous!

Adventure: ad·ven·ture, adˈven(t)SHər,ədˈven(t)SHər/ – an unusual and exciting, typically hazardous, experience or activity, especially with the exploration of the unknown…

My entire life has been built around adventure. I’m fairly certain as a kid I almost always had dirt under my nails, and I liked it that way. It helped that I grew up on a street with almost all boys!

The south end of my hometown was largely unincorporated for the entirety of my youth. The rural suburb I lived in didn’t even have street lights. I went out in the morning, after cartoons and cereal, and came back just before dark. Break that rule and you were forced to stay inside, which was a fate worse than death at the time. My brother and I rode our bikes through the hills, mud puddles (because some roads were still dirt!), and pot holed streets of our wonderland. We built forts, explored ravines, and caught wild animals. Fortunately, our parents always let us keep them. Frogs, toads, snakes, rabbits, hamsters, fish, chickens, dogs, and cats were always in variety at our home. Our parents let us “run wild” as they say. All we needed was a marginal sense of safety (not out best moment running through the underground storm drains) and our imaginations!

I thought every kid spent their childhood fishing, camping, hiking, running, swimming, bike riding, and rollerskating. No cell phones, just finding your kid’s bike on a neighbor’s lawn to locate them. As I passed through high school and college I realized this was not the usual. Many of my friends, even to this day as adults, have never slept in a tent! Shocking, I know! While I try my best not to judge them after they decline yet another invitation to sleep on the ground, in the dark, and go without running water, I remain grateful as ever for all that running wild I did.

I wanted to understand why my friends spent so much time being so clean and, well, ordinary. I learned that being adventurous has more associations to it than the outdoors. Food, for example, is one of my favorite new ways to be adventurous. My palate has mostly been Mexican-American, and then I discovered Thai, Pho, Indian, Korean BBQ, sushi… Oh. My. Gosh… SUSHI!!! Most of the time I’m not entirely certain what I’m ordering, or how to even pronounce it. That’s part of the adventure, and this time I have my many cultural friends to thank for it. Not so ordinary after all!

My second favorite new way to be adventurous is travel. I had previously been up, down, and all over the west coast where I was raised. I thought the Grand Canyon was one of the most marvelous natural geographical features I had ever seen. The layers of sediment and time blew my mind. Would I find anything more grand than this canyon? Well, the sea cliffs of the Cayman Islands, watching turtles breach below as you rock climb up the wall you just dropped down off, is pretty darn breath taking. Peaking past the Pyrenees to view a sliver of the Mediterranean Sea from the French climbing crag of Claret is astounding. And finding myself in the still forests of Squamish, Canada is a tranquil that’s hard to beat. 

Could it be that the expeditions of my youth are just a few pebbles in my own grand canyon of adventure?  My brother kept his wild roots too, and is still there for many camping, hiking, running, and now rock climbing trips. Which brings me to my third new adventure, and by far my favorite, rock climbing! I’m also able to, and mainly, share this passion and lifestyle with my best friend and husband, Louie. As a family we have been to the remote, and to the serene. We’ve traveled to new states, and new countries. Our friends span the globe. We promised each other to always stay adventurous, and as we come upon our first anniversary I can say we have. Building an indoor rock climbing gym and business together definitely keeps the spice in our lives. Delegate, separate, and keep to your duties! 

I look forward to many more years of new experiences traveling abroad, trying new foods, and meeting new people with vastly different cultural backgrounds. I know the adventures will be rich experiences with impressionable memories and hardy laughs. Each additional adventure surprises me with depth and wonder, and I hope to share most of them with my followers on my various platforms. My life’s goal is exploring new ways to define this term “adventre”, and so my friends I plan to, and so should you…

Stay Adventurous,

Valarie Tes

Cayman Islands- Sea Cliff Climbing

Mexico- Family Vacation & Exploring with my brother
Photo Credit: Robert Powell

Trying some off the menu items with friends at Spencer’s Bistro, Buena Park.

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