Is Lauren Daigle dead? No– it’s just her new music video

My sister sent me a link to Lauren Daigle’s new music video for “Rescue” and I’m so glad she did. Thanks, Edin. I’ve loved the song for a long while now, ever since I created my own little lyric video for the track.

In Lauren’s official video, which is pretty much as good as mine ūüėČ she is performing her song in Heaven. As I watched, I thought, “Oh Lord, Lauren’s done gone up to glory to shoot this video. Look at the backdrops, all that’s missing are streets of gold. Didn’t get the permit, I guess.”

“Dear Lord, take care of our sister Lauren, she came up there to do a thing with her song and a video and the crew and the crafts service and send her back when you can. Amen.”

Wait, wait… Lauren’s supposed to be in a city near my this coming fall? But… but… how can she be down here if she’s up there? Huh, that WASN’T Heaven? Well, then where on God’s green earth are these¬†stunning, and I mean, STUNNING, locations?

I’ve been to a handful of amazing places in my lifetime (like here and here… and that yummy¬†Indian¬†Restaurant¬†on Nolensville Pike) and I’ve seen beautiful things, but as I watched this video, this is the first time I can ever remember actually becoming short of breath from what I was seeing. This is NOT the first time I’ve been short of breath this year, though, thanks again to the meal AND leftovers from that delicious¬†Indian¬†Restaurant¬†on Nolensville Pike. Cascading snow-covered mountains, streams through snow landscapes, rocky almost lava-like ground that goes on for days. Words truly can’t do the video justice, so why am I even trying?¬†

But if you’re like me, you have questions. Mainly, where is this place in the¬†video?¬†

Here’s what I dug up.

According to an article on People’s website, the video was filmed on Knik Glacier in Alaska. And I thought Tennessee was God’s country! Dang you, Alaska, you beautiful rascal.

The video was directed by John Gray, who you might recognize from other stuff he’s done. Right? I’m sure he’s done other stuff.

Ok, back to Alaska… this Knik Glacier is one we can enjoy too, it’s not just for the famous people. A group called Knik Glacier Tours will… well, they’ll take you and your son on a tour of the glacier. Not just your son, anyone you bring, really. And yes, I provided a link to their tour page but I’m not getting any kind of commission unless they happen to see this post and feel like Venmo’ing me some funds ūüôā @BenWilder615

PS. that Venmo thing goes for you too, delightful¬†Indian¬†Restaurant¬†on Nolensville Pike. ūüôā

You can also see lots of wildlife there at the glacier. Bears, wolverines, sheep, goats. But the goats can’t be as adorable as these.

Later folks,
Out of the Wilderness




Freedom in Eleuthera, Bahamas

I recently went to the island of Eleuthera in the Bahamas. If I had to describe this lesser known tropical destination in a few words: amazing, authentic, natural.

Why those 3 words? Well, if you’re like me, you are planning on Googling how to pronounce Eleuthera at this very moment! Real quick, I’ll save you the time…


When I first found out about the trip I was going on (it was a church mission trip to this island), I thought, “Where???” I Googled it and YouTubed it just to try finding out how to say it, much less where it was or what I should expect when I was there! So because it’s pretty much still under the radar as far as vacation destinations go, it’s very natural and undisturbed by commercialism (for the most part!).


one of my nieces on an early Bahamas morning

It’s authentic. The northern end and central Eleuthera is where people who are vacationing end up, but if you travel further south past Governor’s Harbour, you’ll quickly see that almost the entire island is made up of small communities, local schools and stores, a few churches, and that’s basically it. Oh, and lots of dogs! So when you meet folks there, they’re the real deal. Not looking to upsell you on necklaces, trinkets, braiding your hair, or other things you might encounter in the more touristy areas of the Bahamas. I will say this, though… a normal-sized package of adult diapers was around $64! I’m not going to tell you why or how I know that, let’s just move on ūüôā

It’s quite natural. We went to beaches where people probably hadn’t been in months, if not years. It’s kind of crazy that such a beautiful place can still be like that. I have a feeling it won’t always be that way, a strong feeling — because of this. Yep, Disney will be cruising there in a few years.

For now, Eleuthera (which means “Freedom”) remains a beautifully and relatively undisturbed natural wonder you just gotta go see for yourself. From the caves to the blue water, giant spider-like trees to the kind people, colorful fish to colorful personalities, rugged terrains to pink sandy beaches…

It’s all amazing, authentic, and natural!

-Out of the Wilderness

The Reawakening: Part 10

I’m a few months into being laid off and a lot of people have been asking…

“What are you gonna do? Have you found work yet?”

The truth is, I have been idling. Don’t get me wrong, the engine is running, but it’s kind of like I’m at the starting line waiting to take off. Other people that were laid off or left CMT around the same time I did have found work, and that’s awesome. In the back of my mind, I think to myself, “Should I have jumped right back into the workforce as fast as possible?” But then I remember the plan. The plan was to actually enjoy the time off with a kind severance from CMT because it’s so rare to be in your mid-30s with time and freedom to pursue other interests… and travel.

I went to Missouri to volunteer at a Christian sports camp where I worked when I was a wee little college student. I’ve been to Florida a few times for time at the beach, time with my family, and this. ¬†I also went with my parents and 2 oldest nieces to the Bahamas. That never would have happened if I was still working at CMT.

I’ve been kayaking, hiking, dog-sitting, rewatching A Different World, so many things that have reminded me how much fun life can be. I needed a reminder. I was in a routine, and I love routines so that wasn’t necessarily a bad thing, but I was living the cliche of “going through the motions.” Now it’s impossible to go through those same motions.

So what’s next? I’m excited about the idea of pursuing a couple different opportunities. I know I prefer to stay away from the traditional form of making money: going to a job, clocking in, clocking out, wearing a uniform. In the next few weeks I’ll be brainstorming and writing down a plan to make the rest of this year as good and exciting as the summer has been.

Thanks for following along on the journey!

-Out of the Wilderness

Vacationing in the Bahamas…WITHOUT a GoPro

For anyone who knows me, it’ll probably be a surprise¬†that on my recent trip to Atlantis in the Bahamas, I made a specific decision¬†not use my GoPro. It’s part of an overarching theme I’ve been clinging¬†to lately, to be in the moment without trying to preserve it in any other way than old-fashioned memories.

You know, the brain. The original data bank.

I could have put together a quick highlight video similar to a few I’ve done in the past, like a trip to Orlando to see my brother’s family, Disney vacations, or a recent beach workout video.

But I’m currently of the mindset that if you’re not here with us, then you wouldn’t get it anyway. So the camera stayed in my bag untouched for entirety of the trip. And honestly, it’s been so nice not to be carrying it around looking for the best angle, trying to record the unforgettable moments, repeating actions that were missed, hoping certain fish do things that are more entertaining than just snorkeling and¬†watching them swim around their little homes. It’s being in the moment. It’s knowing that anything I see can be special because it happened once, I got to see it, and no one else ever will. It’s a part of history that will be talked about, exaggerated on, acted out, or thought of fondly, but like the barracuda I swam near today or the sand castles my nieces and I built today, there aren’t any pictures. No video.

Just great memories.

Do you want to see sharks? Do you want to see the colorful fish at Cove Beach? How about someone you know kissing a dolphin? Then go do it! Make some memories that you’ll be sad to forget when you’re old!

-Out of the Wilderness

Atlantis: Go with the flow

Holla if you hear me flow.
It’s another day here at the fabulous Atlantis resort in the Bahamas, and even when it rains, it’s great. You always hear that it would be a major let down if it rained while you’re on a tropical vacation. I can tell you here at Atlantis, it’s not true. The rain hasn’t slowed us down a bit. Unless you were simply hoping for a dark tan,¬†you’re out riding water rides, floating down the river rapids, or swimming in the ocean or pools. There are plenty of indoor activities, too. Ok, I know this is sounding like a paid advertisement for Atlantis so I’ll move on. Today’s theme was “Go with the flow.”

We conquered 3 water rides that we hadn’t tried yet. We built sand castles. We performed our best running-into-the-water-and-doing-a-flip routines. We went down the rapid river ride. It rained and we were cold, but it was fun. We bought groceries at the nearby Atlantis market (a lot closer than the first market I went to). Our evening included watching American Pharoah win the Belmont Stakes and solidifying his place in history by winning the Triple Crown. Today there were a ton of people watching horse racing that watch horse racing exactly one time a year. I am one of those. All of us here on this trip are one of those.

Go horses!
-Out of the Wilderness

Atlantis: Don’t Worry, Be Happy

Keep the Faith.
We’re already on the second day¬†of our trip to Atlantis in the Bahamas and our theme for the day is “Don’t Worry, Be Happy.” It’s a tough one because there’s a ride called the Leap of Faith. It takes a leap of faith to say yes, to walk up the stairs without turning around, and to not make up a reason why you can’t do it. You might be worried as you climb up the steps leading to the slide entrance. But our theme was to not worry. As Michael Jackson once sang, keep the faith. Faith that if the ride were dangerous, no one would do it. Right? Plus, the entire trip down this particular slide takes all of 3 seconds. Anyone can do anything for 3 seconds.¬†

Bahemian Rhapsody.
So I should back track a little. We’re on Day 2 but it was about 2 months ago that I kind of invited myself on this trip. It originally was my Dad, Mom, and my sister’s oldest 2 daughters. Without a day job, I thought there was no better time to tagalong. After a few days of consideration, I was “in”. How can I turn down a chance to visit another beach, especially with my fun family? So a couple of things I should confirm for you: Yes, the Bahamians have accents. Yes, the accent sounds awesome. Yes, things cost a lot of money, a box of name brand Cheerios is about $8.

Hey, mon.
Throughout the whole trip my nieces have been saying, “Hey, mon!” to each other, along with a made up song that includes belting out commands and adding “mon!” to the end. It’s amazing. Something like, “Get out my face, mon,” or “Put on your shoes, mon,” or “Let’s eat some food, mon,” anything with 4 syllables, I guess. Of course, I cannot not think of this scene from the Cosby Show every time one of us says, “Hey, mon!”

Better be startin’ somethin’.
From the moment we arrived, we were already startin’ to have fun checking out the water rides, swimming and playing on the Atlantis Beach, talking with an island accent, and for me, meandering through the casino.¬†We’re all looking forward to more beach fun!
-Out of the Wilderness

A Dream Vacation

“Aruba, Jamaica, ooooo, I wanna take ya…
to Bermuda, Bahama, come on, pretty mama!
Key Largo, Montego, baby why don’t we go?”

I woke up singing the lyrics of “Kokomo” by the Beach Boys. It’s one of those disappointing mornings when¬†you realize¬†the dream¬†you just awoke from is better than real life, know what I mean?¬†This time I was part of an all-male quartet singing about a tropical paradise that may or may not actually exist. You should’ve heard my vibrato! The dream probably came from my subconscious desire to be a good singer. Or my very conscious desire to be somewhere beachy. Today, neither¬†are true. But all through breakfast I¬†sang like no one was listening! Much to the dismay¬†of those who were listening.

me in Jamaica.

me in Jamaica.