After four years of wandering around, its becoming increasingly clear that I cannot seem to settle down and become a normal human being. Every summer I tell my friends this autumn is the one, this is the year I finally settle down, get a real job, a real girlfriend, maybe a car, or even health insurance! I tell them that pretty soon I’ll get married, get some kids, get a pension, get a fancy sports car, get some grandkids, and retire happily on a beach in South Florida, drinking Miller High Life with the other Midwestern family that lives across the street from our gated community condo.
And then I don’t. This website is going to attempt to be a collection of that, of my inability to become a functioning adult in society. It will include all the stories, videos, interviews, pictures, recipes, dancing instructionals, workout tips, history lessons, drinking games, hippo feedings, and whatever else I happen to run into on my journeys.
Travel should be an adventure, and can often fall apart incredibly quickly. Whenever things start going sour, I just repeat to myself, “at least it’s an adventure.” Even if I’m being chased by armed robbers in Ghana, avoiding jail time in Moscow, getting lost in the rough part of Rio de Janeiro, or just getting terrible food poisoning in Barcelona, I repeat to myself, it’s all part of the fun.
I was born and raised in Minnesota, meaning I’m often almost too polite for my own good. I say “sorry” far too much when walking through metropolitan cities, and can struggle with haggling in local markets. They said fifty rupees, it seemed like a fair deal, I didn’t want to be a bother.
My name is Luke Gruenhagen. I’m 25 years old; I love warm pasta dinners, a nice glass of scotch, and exploring the world. I’m currently trying to cut back on two of those things. Welcome to the Wandering Minnesotan.
Here I am living on our glacier dogsledding camp in Juneau, Alaska, holding our favorite bottle of Irish Whiskey, Hellcat Maggie. Saga the Puppy is clearly more of a gin and tonic kind of girl.