From the silent redwood forests to the magnificent Sierra spires, to sea-caressed Channel Islands National Park, to the light returned to Californian eyes, everything is tinged with more bright.
The word freedom now rings a little differently.
And the adventure and childish joy of travel hangs enticingly in the air.
Grab it and go, on the road or in the air.
And when you do, please pack along the heart-singing joy and a small pocketful of simple responsibilities.
Visit California calls it a responsible travel code. Based on the noble concept of Respect (and spelled out from there), it is short, thoughtful — and worth reading. Now that we are joyously traveling again, it is a fine code to tote along. It weighs nothing and ferries so many things…
Roam Responsibly. I will explore California thoughtfully and responsibly, maintaining the utmost respect for everyone and everything I encounter.
Educate Myself. I will do my research before traveling across the state, familiarizing myself with local regulations and community concerns, which may have changed over time. This is especially important in rural communities with limited healthcare resources.
Safety First. I will follow public health directives from government officials, including physical distancing measures. I will take all necessary steps to minimize health risks to myself and others and stay home if I’m sick.
Preserve California. I will protect and nurture the Golden State’s pristine outdoor spaces and cultural icons, by maintaining a light footprint at every turn and paying special attention to delicate ecosystems.
Embrace Community. I will support local businesses and do my part to ensure the long-term prosperity of the places I visit.
Celebrate Culture. I will immerse myself in California’s diverse local cultures and embrace the traditions and practices I encounter.
Teach Others. I will lead by example and share these practices with fellow travelers, acknowledging that we all share the responsibility to protect California.
So thank you for traveling kind. For traveling with understanding. For traveling with consideration. For doing simple things, like parking and walking where you can (Ventura was born walkable), or putting trash where it belongs.
Thank you for continuing to be as big as we know we can be. Look back at what we have accomplished. And those accomplishments, so many of them were built upon countless small things. Selfless sacrifices. Nods to respect.
Small things aren’t always small things.
And they have added up to where we are now.
Moving into this new bright world.