“You’re doing what?” is the reaction I got from most people. Whether it was in response to driving to Yosemite and back within a day or driving to Yosemite for an Instameet, I have no idea. I’ll admit that up until 3AM on that pitch dark Saturday morning, I wasn’t sure if I was really going through with it. But once I was out of bed, packed, and on my way, I was all excitement from there.
Google Maps said it was around a 6 hour drive from Venice to El Capitan Meadows. I think we made it in under 5.5. It really wasn’t too bad of a drive; nothing that some coffee and cheese danish from Starbucks couldn’t get us through, anyway. We got in around 10:30AM and saw car after car parked along the road, along with a massive group of people in the middle of the meadow. It was kind of an incredible sight to see. By the time we found a parking spot the group looked like a little ant mound.
I get teased a lot for geeking out over Instagram and being so nit-picky about my photos. And in all honesty, I wish I had started sooner. Working in the digital marketing space I thought of social media as work. When I started, “Instagram influencers” were just on the cusp of becoming the next big marketing sensation, and I simply thought of them as a moving piece for client campaigns.
It took me this last year or so to realize I was a content creator myself, and that I was already steered in that same direction. From my Nike obsession to my Tender Greens loyalty, I'm always curating content for the brands I love. And when LifeProof selected me as the weekly bucket list contest winner and sent me a $250 gift card to REI, I knew I was onto something.
So when people ask why I do what I do and try to understand why I spend my free time outside of work working, I’ll say this: To be a part of a community that is as excited as I am for the same little things in life. To not only inspire others who seek adventure, but to build a relationship with brands that embrace the same lifestyle and values as I do. Whether I win $250 or am inspired to drive 6 hours, I consider it a win in my book. And as long as I can in return inspire just one person, it’s all worth it to me.