I believe in adventure. I believe in the lure of what is around the next corner. I believe in the possibilities of the unknown.
When I was young, we had a long ravine behind our house running the length of our neighborhood and beyond. For me, the ravine was another world. It was my playground. I could walk and walk and walk. I climbed over fallen trees. I crawled under others. I peered over and down the drop off descending below to the creek cutting through the ravine. I was always yearning to see what was around the next bend—figuring, in my youthful imagination, I would come across a native tribe, an amazing waterfall or a lost treasure.
While I never did come across those things, I was never disappointed in what I found, and the lure of what might be beyond the next bend always kept me going… and coming back.
This sense of adventure has stuck with me since then, and I have made it a point “to adventure” in order to regain a sense of wonder, clear my mind and open it up to new possibilities.
In one such wondrous moment during a backpacking excursion, I was on top of a narrow ridge in a gorge after a rainstorm when an ascending mist came up from the steep valley below and engulfed me. I could simultaneously see the whiteness of the mist, feel its wetness and smell the scent of pine it had gathered from the trees through which it passed before it reached me.
While we cannot always be guaranteed these “wowing” and picturesque moments when we adventure outside of the “comfort zone” of our daily experience, we do open ourselves up to what the world has to offer—its simple beauty, its wildness, its unfairness, and its decaying and foreboding places. It forces us to be present, alive and conscious. It makes us boil off the habitual distractions that can accrue during our normal, daily lives and that take us away from our passions and interests.
Not surprisingly, I have come to value how rejuvenating these adventurous moments can be. Clearly, my preferred adventuring is the type that is very tangible and viscerally felt—out in the nature—where we are physically engaged in the experience. Nonetheless, there are many ways of adventuring outside of our comfort zone that open us up, force us to learn and adapt and allow us to achieve a more balanced state from which we can more effectively be present as ourselves in our lives.
I believe in adventures that get us there. How do you adventure?