Brooke and I met just under a year ago while being tossed around a particularly windy patch of New Zealand. We were part of a jet-lagged contingent speaking at the Going Global music conference and spent the week talking, listening, and laughing our way through Wellington, Auckland, and Christchurch before departing Hobbitland for the Big Sound conference in Brisbane.
It was in Australia that our Sisterhood Of The Somewhat Nerdy Midwestern Curiosity Seekers really blossomed. A group of us shared a taxi van into the city, and as the driver dumped me out on the pavement, he shook his finger and warned, “It is very dangerous where you are staying! There are many prostitutes!” before speeding off for less lascivious corners of the city. Possibly fearing for my safety and wellbeing, Brooke offered a berth on the lumpy pullout couch in her suite’s living room, and I accepted.
Our term as roommates lasted a single night, but we were already sisters from another mister, peeing with the door open and plotting future adventures, including a magical tour of the Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary the following day, where, joined by our comrade Lisa, we cooed at every single bird, petted every single kangaroo, and cuddled with one very, very patient koala.
Afterwards, we parted ways – Brooke to Sydney, me to Melbourne – and buoyed by our marsupial highs, promised to get together once we were both back on California soil.
I’d say we kept that promise and then some.
Part of what gelled our friendship is that while in New Zealand and Australia, we were riding the same wavelength of gentle dorkdom, squealing at lambs, marveling at cultural differences, and asking a million questions of everyone within earshot. And the thing is – this isn’t just how we are when traveling; this is how we are all the time. Curious, inquisitive, adventurous. It’s what I love about Brooke, and what I try to celebrate within myself. So when she brought over that Girl Scout Handbook, it just made sense.
In a way, I think we’re doing this project for one another as much as we’re doing it for ourselves, and that’s what makes it special. But make no mistake – this isn’t a party of two. We’re both lucky to have a slew of amazing friends and family that inspire us, and I have a feeling that you’re all going to be roped in one way or another.
So, welcome to The Sisterhood Of The Somewhat Nerdy Midwestern Curiosity Seekers, my friends, and let the celebration of gentle dorkdom begin!
Photo: Shawnté Salabert