This weekend I spontaneously took a trip to Tyler State Park. Within an hour of getting off work on Saturday, I had found a dog sitter for my pup, bought some snacks, filled up a cooler with beer and ice, threw some clothes and toiletries into my backpack purse (Yes, I carry one of those. I loved them in the 90's and I love them even more now) and we were on our way.
These are a few things I learned/relearned this weekend.
1. Coppertone Waterproof Sunscreen is the shit and Deep Woods Off is no joke. I am the sunscreen queen and mosquitos love me. Mermaids are used to being under water so we burn easily and that shit sucks. I've decided that mosquitos are little vampire bastards and they like to suck my blood. I am happy to say that I came home without a sunburn and I don't have West Nile.
2. Sometimes no plans are the best plans. Everything about my work life is scheduled. I know what my day will look like every hour on the hour for about the next 4 weeks. I can tell with a quick glance at my appointment book if I'll have time for a yoga class, whether or not I'll have a lunch break that day or if I'll be off early enough for Happy Hour. I have dates marked for trips, weddings, parties and concerts. It's nice to be this organized but it is also very liberating on my days off to do whatever the f*ck I want, whenever the f*ck I want. There is freedom in that. When you have no plans, you have no expectations and you can allow things to just happen naturally.
3. You can turn anything into a taco. I brought along a package of roasted chicken lunch meat and a container of store bought potato salad. There's nothing quite like a lunch meat & potato salad roll up on a beautiful day sitting next to a lake with a handsome guy. Try it sometime.
4. A kayak is quite possibly the most peaceful form of transportation. There's a first time for everything and I was a kayak virgin. I sat up front and Drew sat behind me. (I think the person in back has to do the most work.) The trees that surrounded the lake were gorgeous. The breeze felt amazing and it was so quiet out on the water. It forced me to silence my mind. I could have stayed out there for hours. Very cool experience!
5. There is something truly magical about a sky full of stars. I grew up in the country but I now live in the city and you just don't see stars here. This weekend was a New Moon. The moon is not actually visible on a New Moon which makes the sky that much darker and the stars that much brighter. I don't know much about stars and constellations but I do know that looking up at the vast sky and seeing all of those stars shining down on me was incredible. I saw 3 shooting stars that night. I felt like Simba in The Lion King trying to make sense of it all.
I had an amazing weekend with new experiences and I was reminded again how important it is to be open and why I have that longing for adventure. Hiking, swimming, kayaking, drinking beer, gazing at stars, good conversations and reconnecting with Mother Nature. That's the good stuff.