"To love oneself is the beginning of a lifelong romance." I am one of many people on Earth. I long to see the world and encounter every malady and pariah it has to offer. I find that we can often get too comfortable within our own microcosm, never venturing outward to explore that which is uncomfortable and foreign. Life is given meaning when we can find those with whom we relate and cherish; our friends, partners, and families are evolving, tangible creatures that give us something to live for-- if we can improve the lives of those we hold dear, we may begin to improve the world. At eighteen years old, I have not lived on Earth very long. I have not encountered everything she has to offer, but I have seen my fair share of the southeastern U.S. After touring Stax Records in Memphis, throwing beads in New Orleans, gathering around a campfire in Tennessee and solemnly touring Gatlinburg, shouting "L'Chaim!" with the kind folks of Savannah, and rolling through the high, rocky interstate of Georgia, I've seen a bit for my age. I've met countless souls that I will never forget brushing up against in this great ethereal game we all play. I'm delighted to learn everyone's stories and I've come to find that, even in the face of hardship and bitterness, people tend to come together as a species and we all have a few common loves: music, shared experiences, and an honest smile to remind us that someone is listening. It is this adolescent wisdom that I hope to foster into a full-fledged education in the ways of the world. When the time comes for my heart to stop beating and when the last synapse signs off, I hope to leave the world I've known as better off than when I landed on that linoleum eighteen years ago.