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Can lying in the sun be an adventure?

You have probably figured out over the last several months, I am having a challenge keeping my posts focused on adventures. After all, my catch phrase is, Your Maine Connection to the Outdoors. Between Covid and concentrating on publishing three books this year, I have not gotten outside as much as I would have liked to.

Currently, Bruce and I are on vacation. We took a little trip to Florida with his parents where we are enjoying some R & R at their winter home in The Villages. It isn't a mountain top or a secluded forest far from civilization, but it is warm and sunny, two of my favorite things. Celebrating Thanksgiving and getting ready to travel to the sunshine state prevented a traditional escapade for me to write about this week.

I was resting in the lounger contemplating, what on earth am I going to write about today?" I was wondering if lying in the sun could be an adventure. As the sun warmed my northern-sun-deprived skin and the more than gentle breeze hindered any noise from the not so distance boulevard reaching my ears, I felt like I was in paradise. Then my imagination took over.

My brain is really good at escaping reality, in fact, sometimes it is hard to remain in the moment because I am always thinking of something. My noggin seldom takes a break. Most of the time that gets me into trouble because I don't pay attention to what those around me are saying. But today, I welcomed the journey my thoughts took me on and decided, yes, in fact, lying in the sun could be an adventure.

Since I couldn't go on a real trip, I went on a mental one. I wasn't on the back BBQ pad in an antigravity lounger surrounded by houses on all sides. Instead, I was on a beach somewhere. The coconut scented sunscreen lotion I applied only enhanced that feeling. Add the rustle of palm branches above my head and I had no trouble at all pretending I was in the French Polynesian or some other tropical get-away.

The only thing missing was the ocean spray, but even that wasn't far away as a neighbors sprinkler system activated.

Nothing beats the real deal of an experience but when such an adventure is not possible we only need to seek out those who have gone on one and live vicariously through them. We can read their blogs and books or we can watch their YouTube channels and documentaries. But if all that is not possible either, all we have to do is harness the power of the six inches of real estate between our ears. Our imagination is a powerful tool. It is the source of all inventions and where dreams and goals come from.

That escape from reality helped me more than once while hiking the Appalachian Trail. The most important time was when I had truly had enough. I really wanted to quit. I was not a Happy Hiker. I was angry, mad, and being very mean to Bruce. I knew I needed a check-up from the neck up. So, the only thing I could think to do was to tell myself, "I QUIT!!!"

Our brains really don't know the difference between fact and reality. It believes whatever we tell it. So, I told it, I was done - the misery was over. In doing that my whole being relaxed. I went to my corner of the shelter and conceded to the fact that I was done hiking. It was so liberating. I imagined I was done.

The next day, I woke up refreshed and ready to take on more miles. After that point, I told myself I was no longer long distance hiking, instead, I was only section hiking, a few days at a time. The sections just happened to be strung together. But it was my imagination that helped me succeed.

I am sorry I do not have a real adventure for you to read about this week, but I do hope you will maybe go on your own mental escape. It is free and you can go anywhere. Just remember to come back.

Happy Hiking.


Health Update

I feel I am finally back on the path to a healthy lifestyle. I no longer feel that food is controlling me. I have had this sense of power before and lost it, so I hope to maintain it. Consistency is the key.

Details and more AT stories can be found in my new book Happy Hiking coming out soon.


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