Wednesday, October 27, 2021

‘Traveling Light’ by Brian Andreas




“I can imagine it working out perfectly, I said. I can’t, she said and I said no wonder you’re so stressed.”

Traveling has never appealed to me, and so it came as quite the surprise when I met and fell in love with someone who loved to travel. Maybe that’s why this book’s title appealed to me right away. Whenever I travel, I take the bare essentials and not much else, and I found this book in the middle of packing for a trip. It’s a slim hardcover, and I consumed it all at once. The first time.

This is a quick and easy read, if you just flip the pages, enjoy the pictures, and read the words. That’s what I did the first time I read this book. Then, I went back and took a second look. If you take the book to heart, ponder the many ways each little bit succinctly captures something relating to life or someone you know or something you’ve thought, then it’s not quick and it’s not easy. In fact, each page holds a poem that is perfect to be read at the beginning of the day as a prompt. But be thoughtful about how you read this book, because in my experience, once read, this book will change your outlook on life…and isn’t that a beautiful happenstance?

If you’re reading this column, I’m going to think two things about you. One, you like to read books, and two, you like to read opinions from other people about books they’ve read. Since I’m fortunate enough to write this column, I hope you think two things about me. One, I love to read, and two, I love to share my opinions about books that have changed me. Because of this, I’ll admit that I’ve started a couple different books a couple different times — for this column — and I’ve decided not to write about them. Enough negativity can be found in the world, and for someone to write, revise, and publish a piece of literature is a brilliant endeavor, but if that book didn’t make me think something new or take me to a place I’ve never been, then I probably won’t include it here.

But this is one of those books that needs to be mentioned.

The writing is beautiful, and the author does a fantastic job creating short poems that make sense and make you think that perhaps you’re not the only one to notice such things. Even though the writing is simple, the idea behind the words



is complex. Charming and fun, humorous and delightful, each page holds something I consider to be inspiring or motivating, and definitely thought provoking.

“Destiny? There’s only your time and then there’s not-your-time, he said. All the rest is made up to keep you busy.”

This — that, right there — started me down this path that I’m still skipping along, realizing one heartbeat at a time, that this time is all the time I’m going to have. It’s a chilling realization to know that a book can change a person’s philosophy, and this author did just that. I mean, the author is so completely insightful, and so utterly masterful at conveying the oneliner that will instigate my further exploration into my own meaning that I can’t help but be changed by the words on the page. I started questioning my own use of time, how I spent my days, why I prioritized the way I did…and it’s not just that one piece that did it. Throughout the book, bits of wisdom and common sense hit me again and again.

“I try and get a lot of living in early in the morning before everyone else gets up, because after that, it doesn’t seem so much like living as it does putting up with stuff.”

See what I mean? Do these bits of the book resonate with you as deeply as they do me?

There is so much of this book I want to quote to you, but then I’d be taking the best parts of what I so enjoyed about this book. But I’d love to hear from you! Buy it, borrow it, read it, and comment. Let me know what your favorite poems, phrases, or words were. What captured you most about this book?

As always, thanks for your time!

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Marisa Cleveland loves to laugh, hates to cry, and does both often. She has a master’s degree from George Mason University and joined The Seymour Agency after she ended an eight-year career teaching students language arts, grades 6-12. Previous to teaching, she worked as an assistant director for a graduate school in Washington, D.C., before settling in Southwest Florida over a decade ago. As a former gymnast, cheerleader, and dancer, she understands the importance of balance, and she encourages everyone to stay flexible. Cleveland is a Leadership Marco 2015 alum, and she loves connecting with other readers through social media. Though she’s a painfully private introvert, she can be reached through her website: or follow her journey on Twitter: @marisacleveland.

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