The Nature of Adventure

“It’s an Adventure!”, I exclaimed.

“It is? I thought it was just Murphy’s Law.”, he bemoaned.

Adventure is a state of mind. The willingness to be outside your comfort zone and the acceptance of what comes from doing so. For me, the comfort zone is that place where the mundane happens. It is the daily ritual of rising from slumber, dressing, caring for my body, and checking the weather. The movement to the outside of that zone is when I put on the shirt that I never wear because it is not me, prepare the eggs in a fashion I saw on a cooking show, or decide that I can head to work without putting my jacket on even though there are not a few scudding clouds. The adventure is what follows from such simple changes.

Adventure is not foolish and being outside your comfort zone does not mean playing in traffic, though it might mean taking another route to work.

Adventure is not resignation, and “acceptance of what comes” is not surrender but a willingness to see adversity as a chance to further explore the universe.

Adventure is the willingness to open up to the Universe. It is the wonder of mindfully living each day, your perception of the world.

I can sit here this morning and look out my window, see the dark clouds and think that it is going to rain yet again; or I can realize that I am in Ireland and rain is the natural course of things.

I can look back on yesterday and see that riding my bicycle down the temporary muddy lane of the Global Village at the Volvo Ocean Race site in Galway was a challenge; it was exciting, and the slick, sticky black mud defeated me when I hit a hard object (buried pipe, stone ridge, edge of buried pavement) and went tumbling to the ground. But then, I fell in the grass alongside the lane, and it, too, had been saturated by days of rain and gave way beneath me, not unlike the bed I fall into every night. The challenge was too much for my skill, the result was a slight mudding of my shorts, shirt, and bicycle, an insult to my dignity and pride, and the humiliation of falling off my bicycle in front of people. The adventure arose from the willingness to try to cycle the muddy route and from the taking the defeat with humor, not anger.

Adventure is the choices you make. Adventure is your perception of the world.  For me adventure does not have to be traveling half way around the world to some exotic place – it can be the brief stop in front of a flowerbed to examine tiny wildlife buzzing about.

As heroes only arise when there is both a challenge that must be overcome and no opportunity of assistance, adventure arises when the mindful travel the road less traveled.

Today I am going to take my mud-tinged bicycle and ride under the graying skies, into the city of Galway to explore the Global Village and Race Village of the Volvo Ocean Race, for I am in Ireland and adventure awaits.

– Claude

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3 responses to “The Nature of Adventure

  1. I like the way you think. It’s no wonder that the beautiful and smart, Cindy Hill, is by your side.

  2. I’m with you Claude. If you skip all the rides down the muddy trail you’d never fall or be embarrassed that you were seen doing it, but you’d also never feel the adrenaline rush that you got just before you realized that it had all gone wrong. Without the “gone wrong” there’s no “I did it”. Keep going for it.

  3. Pingback: Cycling and the Change of Seasons | galwayrambling

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