Our Vans Warped Tour Roadies are living on a tour bus for about 10 weeks, traveling the country to spread the word about our mission. They get to join more than 120 incredible bands and 18 nonprofit organizations on the road: they’ll hit 42 cities by the end of the summer.
Nathan Garcia is one of our Roadies, and he’s been part of our team for close to a year. He started off as an Artist Relations intern last fall and spring, then transitioned into his current role on the road. This week, he’s sharing some reflections with us about his journey.
It’s late, I can feel the bus winding along the highway, and although a few people are still awake, the bus is silent (except for the clicking of my keyboard and the murmur of ESPN unwatched in the lounge).
I love being on the road, and even greater, I love sharing Invisible Children’s story with others. The disbelief that I get to do both has yet to wear off because similar to the path that Dan, our driver, is currently navigating, this last year was paved with twists and turns.
Last summer, I graduated from University of California at Davis and began my anxiety-inducing search for the commonly asked “what’s next?” I updated my resume, but still didn’t feel like it represented me fairly; I couldn’t find room to include that I loved to travel (specifically, the type of traveling that I had with my band), or that I loved going to shows where everyone is yelling at the top of their lungs. Eager to find a blend of human rights advocacy and music, I asked a mentor if she had any input about my hope to tour and go to music festivals for a cause I believed in. She explained to me, with love and wisdom, that my dream was best set aside — and probably for a while.
After a few unexpected turns, in September, I found myself in an internet cafe in Guanajuato, skyping into an interview with Invisible Children for an internship in the music department. In my mind, it was a shot in the dark, but I enjoy an occasional gamble, so I took the chance.
As you’ve already gathered, I’m on the road now, doing something that I love. Over the past year, I’ve learned that uncertainty is a part of life – and it leaves room for a great story. Beautiful, incredible journeys are always paved with twists and turns and bumps.
If you’re reading this, and your dreams are on the other side of a mountain of uncertainty and risks, I want to encourage you to start climbing; if I can get there, then so can you.
Stay up to date with our Roadies by following @invisible_music and stop by our tent when Warped Tour comes to a city near you.
Photo credit: Whitey Photography