I’ll be honest. When I wrote “Visit Silicon Valley” on my bucket list a couple years ago, I didn’t really know what it meant or where it was. It seemed like this fantasy world where young dreamer-geeks went to live in a garage for a year and emerge millionaires.

And truthfully, I wasn’t too far off.

If you’re on my email list, you know I’ve been doing some videoboard production training/consulting work for the past 2 months. The travel has been intense, but I’ve been having a blast & building my savings account back up little by little.

When I got the call to travel to San Jose, California, I immediately Google’d it to see where I’d be headed. Imagine my surprise when the destination-de-jour popped up as the “Capital of Silicon Valley”!

I arrived and was quickly immersed in the fantasy world. The weather here is constantly a perfect temperature and although the pale millionaires may not know this, gorgeous Pacific beaches are only minutes away.

Today I sit in this Palo Alto coffee shop surrounded by corporate offices of places like Google, Apple, Yahoo!, eBay, HP, Facebook and hundreds of other companies filled with laptop toting, jean wearing brainiacs featuring Web 2.0 logo’d badges.

San Jose, Mountain View, Palo Alto, and the rest of the towns south of San Francisco that make up Silicon Valley are where you come if you want to make a splash in today’s tech world. (Aside: Silicon refers to that which is used to create circuit boards, not that which is prominently displayed a few hours south in LA.)

Several days into my trip, work took me to Homestead High School in Cupertino. A quick wikipedia search informed me that this was the high school home to both Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak, founders of Apple.

Think about that for a second. Steve Jobs, one of the most influential people in computer and phone technology as we know it was once a high school student sitting at a desk just like any other. Only, he had a dream of making a dent in the universe, and he did the work necessary to make it happen.

And as much of a fantasy land as this seems to be, the truth is, the only reason so much tech comes out of this area is because this is where smart people come to focus on doing work they feel strongly about. They come here to be surrounded by those who are already successful in their field.

Success begets success.

Are your surroundings pushing you toward your dreams and goals or holding you back?


Today, Bo crosses #14 off of his bucket list. He’s currently living in Orange Beach, Alabama trying to come up with ways to fund a sailing trip around the world (#31). If you’d like to be a part of the adventure, consider sponsoring a mile.