The Adventure Time Dilation

What physics teaches us about travel’s indelible memories

Surfing in Florianopolis, Brazil.

Surfing in Florianopolis, Brazil.

Einstein’s theory of relativity states that time passes differently for different observers, based on the particular observer’s velocity. The best hypothetical example of this theory in practice is for two watches to be set to the exact same time, then one is sent aboard the International Space Station orbiting at 17,150 mph and the other remains on Earth. Before long, the watch on Earth will noticeably lag behind the other watch speeding around the Earth!

While a genius, Einstein wasn’t an adventure traveler and missed a second component of the theory of relativity: the adventure time dilation effect! When traveling, every moment is an experience that leaves an indelible impression on the traveler. The greater the adventure, the deeper and more numerous the memories.

Street artist in the historic neighborhood of San Telmo in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Street artist in the historic neighborhood of San Telmo in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

This creates a challenge when returning home and reintegrating with “normal” society. Whether gone a weekend, a week, or a year, our friends’ and families’ lives have continued at steady-state with barely a blurb worth mentioning out of the normal routine. When we ask them “What’s new?” and “How was life was while we were away?,” we receive puzzled looks in return. It’s always the same response, “Um, not much, I don’t really remember.”

Meanwhile, we’re eager to regale our loved ones with an endless list of stories and memorable experiences. They will listen kindly, but, despite their best intentions, will never fully relate. What is the returning adventurer to do? It can feel like a fighter jet landing on an aircraft carrier. The deceleration of accumulating new experiences is so great that we need an arresting wire to return to pace of everyday life.

Judgmental monkey in Bali, Indonesia.

Judgmental monkey in Bali, Indonesia.

One consequence of this effect is that while it can be more difficult to form bonds with people who aren’t adventure travelers, the bonds we do create with our fellow travelers are greater and more meaningful. In fact, many studies have shown that the deepest and most solid relationships form through shared experiences. And, those inevitable instances that occur during international travel—those difficult, exhausting, and stressful instances— help us form the strongest relationship bonds of all.

The opportunity to “expand” time and fill your life with incredible memories and deep relationships is right around the corner with a click of a button. So, start dreaming about your next authentic adventure and contact us to start planning today!

“If you don’t do it this year, you’ll be one year older when you do.” - Warren Miller

Courtesy warrenmiller.org

Courtesy warrenmiller.org

Last year, the world lost the great Warren Miller, a perennial inspiration to ski-bums, entrepreneurs, and dreamers everywhere who envisioned a life beyond the 9-to-5 cubicle existence. Warren celebrated the journey, the successes and failures of anyone willing to step into a pair of skis, from the icy beginner slopes of Vermont to the riddled spines of Alaska, all shared with an unforgettable grandpa-like storytelling voice.

After leaving the Navy in 1946, Warren bought his first 8mm camera and teardrop trailer, which he promptly drove to Sun Valley, Idaho. Working as a ski instructor, his friends would film each other to improve their technique. He quickly became both a proficient skier and filmmaker. But his true talent shined when he would show his previous winter’s films to small audiences, narrating the film live each night. It was this narration that would change the action sports and adventure film industries forever.

The ski-porn industry has come a long way since the mid-80’s Warren Miller movies I remember watching as a child in preparation for the coming season, but I will always pick Warren’s voice over an insane 100ft cliff drop to stoke the anticipation for the season’s first snowflakes to fall.

Breanne and I saw him speak many years ago at Seattle’s Benaroya Hall. The voice, the storytelling, his ability to make everyone in the sold out, 2,000-person auditorium feel as if they’re having an intimate fireside chat only him; the experience still gives me chills and brings tears to my eyes writing this years later.

He represented the best of adventure. It wasn’t about how hard you charged, only that you were in the mountains. And his story telling instantly turned a full theater of strangers with a shared passion into whooping and hollering gang of best friends.

Life is short, so go ahead and embrace your dreams. Take that trip of a lifetime, or quit your job and move to the mountains because “if you don’t do it this year, you’ll be one year older when you do.”

Baja, Mexico: Glamping, bioluminescence, star-studded skies, swimming with sea lions, SUP boarding, and clear blue seas!

The star-studded sky put up a decent fight, but paddle boarding among the bioluminescence ultimately won the prize for most memorable moment in Espíritu Santo. I am humbled by the perfection of our experience glamping in the Sea of Cortez - we were gifted the most incredible sunsets, tremendous food, new best friends, swimming with sea lions, Moana-like bioluminescence and more stars than I see even camping in the mountains.