floating bike

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Pack Your Bags - We’re Going on a Roadtrip!

The BLM manages over 245+ million acres of amazing public lands and resources. Today, we’re kicking off the #mypubliclands Summer Roadtrip to visit those lands throughout the summer.

Moving east to west, we’ll spend a week in each state or group of states where the BLM manages lands, mostly in the west. Along the way, we’ll visit breathtaking wild landscapes, explore one-of-a kind resources and events, and go behind-the-scenes with employees in the field. From ghost towns to Burning Man to bat research, we’ll have something for everyone. 

You can read individual roadtrip posts here, and then track our progress all summer on http://mypubliclands.tumblr.com/roadtrip. We’ll add our “stops” to the map along the way, in real time. 

And we’re inviting you to participate through weekly Instagram challenges! Each Monday through Saturday of the summer, tag your photos with #mypubliclandsroadtrip, and we’ll post our favorites each Sunday.  Learn the rules of the road on http://mypubliclands.tumblr.com/roadtripinstagram.  

Join us tomorrow morning as we head out for a stop in Maryland and then down to the Florida coast!  

If I Should Have a Daughter (inspired by Sarah Kay’s “B”)

If I should have a daughter, I will not buy her Barbies because I don’t want her to grow up thinking that the only way to be pretty is by being skinny, blonde and tall. So in place of dolls, I will buy her Play Dohs and Legos and tons of papers and art materials so that early on she would realize how much potential she holds in her hands, how much one person could create with the very little that was given.

And I will teach her how to swim without floating devices, how to bike without training wheels because the only way to know how to keep your head above the water is by being in the water and the only way to find perfect balance is by first experiencing some imbalance. I want her to discover that the kind of learning that sticks is the kind of learning that emerges after being submerged in headaches or heartaches or both. It is the kind of learning that happens in between drowning and refusing to sink, in between falling down and getting up, in between committing and correcting mistakes.

So while I will shower her with books about science and poetry, I will introduce her to the joy of basking in the sunlight and dancing in the rain so she would figure out that the only way to truly know the world is by being out there in the world. In place of folklores, fables and fairytales, I will talk to her about behavior and maturity and responsibility like an adult because that is how we grow—through honesty, and honestly, should I get a chance to be a kid again, that is how I would want to be reintroduced to the world: no icing, no frosting, no sugarcoating, just the truth about the consequences of my actions.

But I also want her to know that no matter her choices, no matter her transgressions, no matter what seasons would come and go, I will always be there. Baby, I will tell her, I will hold your hand when you are a pocketful of roses. I will hold your hand when you are brittle falling leaves. I will hold your hand when you are a ray of sunshine. I will hold your hand when you are painful as ice. But baby, I can only hold your hand. I cannot walk for you. I cannot stand for you. You have to use your own two feet.

And while I will always be there—ready to offer her hugs and Band-Aids and ice creams, I will never shelter her from the cruelties of the world. Instead, I will show her how to build her own shelter. How to draw boundaries without having to put up walls. How to always keep the doors open without letting everything in. How to scare the monsters beneath her bed. How to dispose of skeletons before they could settle in closets. How to learn her own lessons. How to do her own homework. How to fight her own bullies. How to win her own battles. How to live her own life, without expectations other than her own.

– Mark Dimaisip

note: I’ve posted an earlier version of this a few months ago. This is the final version I will be performing in an open mic soon. What do you think?

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Thanks for following the #mypubliclandsroadtrip in BLM Oregon and Washington! You can view a multimedia journal of the roadtrip here: http://mypubliclands.tumblr.com/roadtriporegon.

Tomorrow, the roadtrip heads to Alaska for unique experiences - from arctic wildlife and reindeer herding to the Iditarod Trail to the “wildest” wild and scenic rivers.