In my many years of writing about adventure, one thing I know for sure is that the definition of what constitutes an adventure is in the eye of the beholder. There are plenty of famous quotes about what is or what is not adventurous, but at the end of the day, it’s different for everyone. I’m sure of that.
Until this week, I had never bothered to look up the word in the dictionary. I finally did yesterday, because I write a column and newsletter ostensibly about adventure, and because I wondered, “Will people who read my stuff want to hear the story of how I remodeled a crappy old shed into an office for my wife?” I don’t know the answer to that question, but the first Google result for adventure, from Oxford Languages, is “an unusual and exciting, typically hazardous, experience or activity.”
I started working on the backyard shed at our house in May 2022, hoping to create a space for my wife, Hilary, to get away from me, and our baby, who was born in July 2022. Sure, I have a little experience with home improvement stuff, and might even consider myself handy. But would I hire myself to do this job, if I were not me? Probably not. But, during the first six months of our baby’s life, when I was not going to get too far from home and/or cell phone service on a backcountry trip, it checked all those “definition of adventure” boxes: unusual, exciting, hazardous.
This is not a video about how to do a home improvement project. It’s about love languages. I hope it makes you feel something.