August 28, 2011

Getting Lost.

It is better to look around and enjoy it rather than freak out and miss it.

These signs help, but, evidently, not enough.

My project, 25 Days, is going to take me to 15 cities across the U.S. this year. I am in my second city, San Francisco. I will be doing yoga and riding my bike in each city. I will report to you on my adventures and misdemeanors here.

As I travel through the streets of San Francisco, I get lost a lot. I have a well-used, beat up map I refer to quite regularly, and I understand it most of the time, but there are times when I feel like I should be doing something else. I cannot explain this phenomenon, other than to say that I know where I should be going, but instead, I go in another direction, as if I am being pulled there.

This happened last night. I met a friend at his San Francisco favorite place, and then, after a delightful Indian dinner, we parted ways. I hopped on my bike and was sure I was going the right way, then, I made a wrong turn. I went a ways, realized I was lost, took out the map, and recalibrated. I did this five times.  I went in circles around the same 20 square block area five times.  In San Francisco.  Over Hills.

While lost, I saw, among other things, fire dancers, the night time version of the Bay Bridge and The San Francisco Twins, all dressed up in leopard print. Two hours later, when I arrived at the home where I am staying near the top of Twin Peaks, I was drenched in sweat and exhausted, but happy. It dawned on me that getting lost is one of the best parts of this project.

A cheerful and quirky red flag.

My unexpected experiences with people and places are gifts. I am lucky to be lost. I am lucky to be able to slow down and look around. Instead of hurriedly and frantically trying to figure out where I should be, I embrace where I am. To quote the great Robert Frost, It has made all the difference.

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