The Day I Ran Away From Home

If you read my last post, you’ll understand why my head’s been a mess lately.  If you didn’t, well, let’s just say it has not been a neat and tidy place for a lot of reasons.  Too much emotion, too many questions, not enough answers.

Yesterday I had errands to run and a ton of things to do around the house.  I set off early, wanting to get the errands out of the way so I could go home and stay there.  I was irritated and irritable.  As I was navigating the aisles, thoughts of the ocean kept popping in my head.  How nice it would be on a day like today, I thought to myself.  No, the good angel on the other shoulder said.  You have things to do, and besides it’ll be crowded and you are not a fan of crowds, remember?

I made my purchases and loaded them into my car.  I pointed that car toward Kings Valley Highway.  As I drove down the parking lot, the thoughts popped up again.  Go.  Just go. Don’t think about it, don’t analyze it.  For once in your life just do something just because.  Because you can.  Because it’s there.  So I turned on my right blinker and hit the gas.  The entire ride over, all 60 minutes of it was spent with me mumbling under my breath, punching buttons on the radio when a song I REALLY didn’t want to hear dared to play and feeling about as out of sorts as I have for a long time.

I hit Lincoln City right at lunchtime.  I stopped and got some sunscreen (No need to add to the lobster-like appearance I was already sporting) and some lunch and headed to Roads’ End.  I was able to snag a spot facing the ocean.  I leaned my seat back, opened all my windows and closed my eyes.  Those sounds, the waves crashing and the seagulls talking, they are simply magic to me.

I ate my lunch and got out to wander around for a bit.  Unfortunately for me, I left home without two pretty important things:  A jacket and my albuterol inhaler.  It being April and windy, venturing too far was, shall we say…ill advised.

So back into the car I went, where I could at least see and hear the powerful waves.  I spent two hours mindlessly watching it and the crazy windsurfers who were enjoying it in their own way.

Reluctantly I looked at my watch and saw that time was up – reality beckoned.

My ride home, however was a much different affair.  I was relaxed.  I was calm.  No more mumbling, no more taking my frustration out on the poor radio.  Whatever song played was ok with me.

I encourage all of you to go to your happy places when you can.  Don’t over think it, just do it. Take an afternoon and run away from home.  You’ll be a better person when you come back.

It always amazes me how calming and centering the coast is for me.  It has never once failed to put a bad mood right for me. When we were there on spring break, I had a night of not sleeping and at midnight I found myself on the balcony.  When I came back inside finally, I spent the next two hours just writing.  Below is an excerpt from that night.

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I have no idea what invisible force compelled me to get up and go to the balcony, but here I find myself, just past midnight. In between the rolling surf and the gossamer clouds are stars more bright and twinkly than any I have ever seen. These stars are not content to be mere window dressing; they are bold and commanding. These stars are hypnotic, like the sparkling lights on a Christmas tree.
There is something so magical about this place, where water meets land. The thundering waves at once deafening and soothing. The sand that appears so solid, yet can shift and sink beneath you in an instant. It is soul-filling, mind-calming and peace-making. It is the very essence of life, with its shifting tides, changing landscapes and unsteady paths. Here, anything seems possible. The horizon stretches out in boundless distance and reminds me that so much is not yet known and I still have so far to go.  Those bright, sparkly stars…they light the way and I shall never forget them.

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