My friends will tell you that I have a knack for getting lost when driving around new cities. It is understandable then, knowing my history of finding myself in unsuspecting locations, that navigating around a new campus has been quite humorous.
I had to make my way to an administrative building one day between classes. I thought it would be a good idea to walk the 25 minutes across campus in 90 degree heat. It wasn’t a good idea. And I was not looking forward to the walk back.
Outside of the admin building was a row of LimeBikes, a bike share system, which promoted the first ride for free. I thought, “I like free. I don’t like walking. I have someplace to be and fast. Let’s do this!”
After quickly downloading the app, making a profile, and unlocking a bike, I jumped on. I was swiftly reminded that I hadn’t ridden a bike in over four years. Moreover, I had not truly exercised since a reconstructive surgery almost 8 months ago. I laughed and said outloud, “What is my life?”
Using my phone GPS to direct me the fastest route (as if I were on a car and not walking) I headed out. For the next 30 mins and 2 miles, I coasted down gradual inclines, powered (read: struggled) up steep hills, darted across traffic, and took a “wrong turn” when I found myself surrounded by nature on a hidden jogging trail.
I did make it to class on time – sweaty and out of breath. And it turned out to be not the most direct or easiest mode of transportation to take.
But it was exactly what I needed.
To step away from what is comfortable and to allow myself to “make mistakes”. I found myself surrounded by beauty and tranquility, while still being so close to the rush of a large university. I stumbled across an adventure during what should have been a straight forward trip. I took a moment to appreciate my own determination and physical abilities, was pleased with my openness to new possibilities, and was reminded that the best journeys often start unexpectedly.