Saturday, January 5, 2013

Sitting at the dock of the bay

That's the moon on a morning in Dolphin Bay
 As I was sitting on the dock, looking up at the stars without the interference of light pollution, I remembered a few days ago the amazing brightness of the moon. It reminded me of what I had read about pagan religions, and how many rites and rituals are based around the full moon. It just makes sense, when the moon is that bright, you don't need artificial light to lead your way, and it's a great time for a group of people to get together without help from the sun to see what you're doing.

I let my mind wander more as the wave tips pushed along the bio-luminescence. It may seem that I really do fly by the seat of my pants... Maybe it looks like I willy-nilly pick up and go someplace new with the blind faith that 'it will all work out', 'que sera, sera', and all that. I actually go into almost everything with a plan a,b,c,d,e,f,g, almost to m.

I always, no matter what, have a plan called 'if all else fails, I can always...'. This plan is usually something I've done before and know I can do again. The 'worst case scenario' of: I could borrow money if I'm in a pinch, I could go back to job xyz, I could live at xyz's place.

My diving board for most of my radical choices has been my firm knowledge in my 'if all else fails, I can go back to xyz, no matter what' plan. You can always go back to something, you will survive. 
I'm sure you've seen studies on happiness and the happiness of one nation compared to others. I've based my personal life happiness on my 'worst case scenario' plan. I don't look at how good things are, I look at the 'if all else fails' spot. Over the years it seems to get better and better. The moment I change it, or notice it change, I feel a huge wash of gratitude because, hey, my worst case scenario is better than rock bottom, it is better than it was.

Sitting out on the dock, with the stars and sea, I realized I could change my 'xyz', I could always come back to right here, and do it all over again. Never has my xyz also been a possible plan b and c. So for me, that means my diving board to spring off of just got a whole lot better. If I had never taken risks my xyz would have always stayed the same and I would have continued to have lived fearfully close to it.
Not all adventures work out the way we hope, but that doesn't mean it wasn't an adventure or a leap off the diving board. I recently read a facebook status of Nancy, the current housesitter of 'The Treehouse', who I've been corresponding with for months, that read:
"I think the challenges of rainforest living have helped me discover that I'm not the adventurer I thought. :-( It's just too hard. Sadly, we're going to go home earlier than planned. "
I was thanked for my positivity when I responded with:
"It's a tough house, so it's not just the jungle. Maybe there's another place that will crop up for you without as much chaos. You made the leap to go, that's where the adventure is!"
In a true adventure, you never really know how or where it's going to end. And, more oft than not comes with some great stories, because the finite details are unforeseeable. For most though, the biggest, hardest part of an adventure is making that first jump! Taking risks, and jumping off your diving board isn't nearly as scary, when you know what level the water is at, when you know the depths you're jumping to. If you know 'the bottom' will be right back where you've been before.

You might physically and habitually be right back where you were before, but the catch with that, is any good adventure will leave you a little changed, a little more self aware. If you're worried about making your next jump, check out these amazing cliff diving photos.


  1. Oh Samantha! ....So much wisdom for one who has only lived a quarter a a century on this third rock from the sun.You continue to amaze me. I see you as a shining star!

  2. If everything goes right -- the way you intended it to, then it's not an adventure, it's a vacation.