how to pack for a mystery



it is raining outside and my heater is broken and I am happy as can be. I am camping out on my bed. I am wearing a warm hat, wool socks, sweatpants and a big sweater my boyfriend gave me. with me on this quilted island I have everything I could possibly need: books, a journal, my guitar and a cup of tea. I'm not leaving until I have a story to tell.

lately I have been craving adventure. the other day I ran into my friend john, he was wearing a marvelous new hat. he said "hello" and then warned that he might smell weird - he had literally just returned from an 8 day journey and was as yet unshowered. he smelled fine. when I asked the nature of his trip, he told me a wonderful tale. a friend of his had told him to be at the airport at 7am and to bring a passport, no other details were given. so when john's alarm went off at 5:15am, he gathered his things completely unaware of what laid ahead.

how does one pack for a mystery?

he settled on the clothes he was wearing, a pair of pants, a pair of shorts, two t-shirts, two pairs of underwear, flip flops, echinacea, toothpaste, a toothbrush, chapstick, a murakami novel, a journal, sunglasses, and one packet of space ice cream (just in case). upon arriving at the airport, he was told by his friend that they would be flying to buenos aires. and so they did, and they had an awe-inspiring time ripe with rooftop sunsets and intoxicated bus rides and hot norwegian girls.

while listening to him, I couldn't help but notice the pulling in my gut for such an experience. why didn't I have a friend buying me a ticket to buenos aires? why didn't I just arrive from an exciting place with these stories to tell? and then it hit me, running into john that day was my adventure. I don't have to go somewhere to experience life. yes, traveling can pry open otherwise sleepy eyes, but I can just as easily force them open with my awareness. I can board a plane or stay in bed, it doesn't matter, as long as I give whatever I am doing my full attention. my life, wherever I am, is the adventure, all I need do is live it.