The Next Chapter

It’s Friday morning at 10am and I find myself sitting in a coffee shop in San Francisco, eating avocado toast and planning out my next several months of adventure and learning. One week ago was my final day at work for the next few months, and so far funemployment has treated me impeccably. Waking up everyday with the option to do whatever I want is certainly something I could get used to. My first day of freedom started on Saturday at just before 5am, because my friend Brian and I ran a 5k over the Golden Gate Bridge to raise money for suicide prevention. Quite a way to start the next chapter of my life- watching the sun rise over the hills of the east bay, lighting the sky a deep gold behind the silhouette of Alcatraz. The rest of the weekend was filled with time outside in Dolores Park, surrounded by friends and loved ones who’ve made my time in the Bay so memorable. Following a weekend of visits with friends, it was off into nature to reset my soul and set some intentions for the coming months of freedom. Yosemite treated me well, as always, and I came away with a clear mind and a course of action for my summer.


Sunrise over Oakland, Alcatraz in silhouette. Not too shabby.

Now that I’ve put some money away, I am leaving the Bay to follow my hunger for knowledge and experience with sustainable construction and design. The first stop on my summer journey will be the Lightning in a Bottle festival down in Bradley, California. So far it’s my favorite celebration of the human spirit and I’m eager to be a part of the creation. I’ve been accepted onto the build team and will spend a few weeks before and after the festival helping to construct/deconstruct all of the stages and art installations. I’m hoping this will provide some good relationships with people who share similar passions and potentially even some further opportunities at other festivals. More than anything, I’m just excited to see how the festival all comes together, and all of the work that goes into creating such an immersive experience. My time at Lightning in a Bottle is what set me off on my path two years ago, when I first found out about Conscious Impact and decided I wanted to devote some time to helping rebuild Nepal.

Following my time on the LiB build team, I will head up to Calgary to see my parents for a few days before flying to New York. During my time there I will help some friends convert a short school bus into a home/classroom on wheels for a cross-country tour they are doing this summer and autumn. This amazing group of designers/builders/creators is planning a trip across the country and back to foster meaningful discussions and exchange knowledge, and I’m eager to be included in the preparation of their journey. They’ll be hitting the road in July, and I’ll head back up to Calgary for a month of family time enjoying the Calgary Stampede, a rodeo festival that’s been taking place annually for over a hundred years. While I’m there I plan to do some backpacking in Banff National Park, up in the Canadian Rocky Mountains. I’ve been a few times in winter months when it’s all covered in snow, but I’m eager to experience it all with a pack on my back and no snow to stop my wandering.

August is looking like I will do an internship with Earthship Biotecture in New Mexico, working on sustainable construction projects for a few weeks. I’m eager to learn from a group that I consider to be among the premier sustainable designers/builders right now. I’m hoping to return to Nepal with some new knowledge and ideas that can contribute to the amazing work that is being done all over the country.

If anyone reading this knows of anybody looking for volunteers on their sustainable build project, please let me know in the comments below or shoot me an e-mail! I’m trying to learn as much as possible this summer. I’ve found a great resource similar to WWOOF, but just for sustainable build projects. It’s called The POOSH, and so far I’ve had great success getting in touch with some really neat projects. If you’re interested in working on this type of project, I highly recommend that website/community as a resource.

That’s all for now- I’ll write more later once I’ve been on the road for a bit! For now, I’m off to prepare for the summer of a lifetime!


Doing my best to make my story worth telling. Summer 2017, bring it on.


One thought on “The Next Chapter

  1. Connie McDowell says:

    Love this, Scott. So excited for you… and for your parents to have some wonderful time with you. Oregon is between Calgary and California–don’t forget! Enjoy every day of this priceless summer. You will look back on this even when you’re as old as your Aunt Connie and Uncle Doug.


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