I’ve just returned from a journey, a trek, a marvelous goings-on of things and places and people. I traveled nearly 1900 miles from my home with plans only for the first few nights.
Houston, Texas–>Seattle, Washington–>Highway 101–>Highway 1–>San Diego.
The famed west coast…The Pacific Coast Highway.
I only knew that I wanted to get away from the world. To breathe air that was fresh. To rest my shoulders from the tension of carrying so much, as we all too often do.
As I drove the hour or so to the airport I was anxious to not miss my flight, remember where to park, have everything liquid out of the carry-on, was I wearing cute socks for the humiliating undressing for TSA…I was far from a vacation state of mind that morning.
I wasn’t worried or stressed, but truly anxious. I heard the voices of the naysayers in my ears above the music I blasted as I drove faster than I should have…
My mother’s fear and trepidation: ‘You should wait until you find someone, a boyfriend or something, to do this with you’.
My best friend: ‘I can’t believe you’re actually doing this. What you going to do, like, at night and for dinner? Are you going to eat alone…? That’s just – weird.’
Come on now – you are entirely too intelligent to be that simple.
Lots of thoughts flitted behind my brow as I flew down the highway that morning. However none were fearful and none were about to convince me that this wild idea of mine was nothing less than the one thing I needed more than I could adequately express.
I landed in Seattle and saw a bright sky, the sun peeking out from behind a droopy cloud. I was instantly charmed. The trees were royal and illustrious – blazing with fall color and soaring above the city scape on perched hills.
Although the daylight was already dipping low onto the horizon, the glint of the sun’s rays from its angle in the sky tossed a ‘God’s fingers splayed’ chorus of light across the city.
I sat stunned in my seat on the magical device that picked me up in flat, expansive, boring-because-it’s-normal Texas and dropped me into this bejeweled, dazzling space. Although one may say I am embellishing – please imagine this – a small, house-pet goldfish is picked up and then plopped *plooop* into a gorgeous lake…that is how I feel each time I lay my eyes on a place I have never seen before. I fill with wanderlust. I want to see every thing and touch it all. I want to take it in, breath it in and take a bite of it into my heart.
After much madness involving baggage claims, rental cars, general GPS nonsense and a hotel check-in I found myself alone in the unfamiliar settings of my hotel room. I sat in front of open windows, with the scent of the city blowing in on the cool, crisp, strange air. I felt the way I always feel when traveling…unabashedly excited – like a child on Christmas morning. Then I remembered why I had booked this particular hotel.
I ran up two flights of stairs to take in the sunset on the rooftop deck. The view was just what I had come to see. As the sun set into the Puget Sound, my soul felt lifted and free. I did feel powerful and at ease. I promised myself, while sitting on that roof top, that I would always remember that feeling.
Anytime my life has me feeling trapped, pressured, stressed or too big, I will recall how it felt to have the unexpected gusts of wind push my hair back and the great feeling of ‘life’ that coursed through me at that moment.
Yes, Rumi was correct. Travel does bring power and love back into your life