There Are Two Kinds of Adventure
“I feel the need to endanger myself every so often.” ― Tim Daly
There are TWO kinds of adventure: the first is when you are stepping into the unknown, and the second is all in your head. Which one you pick is entirely up to you. But I can assure you, both can be pretty exciting — with or without a guide book.
The reason I recently took to adventures was in fact, a manifestation of my childhood whims. I remember my favorite movie then was ‘The Goonies’, where this rag tag crew find a map possibly leading to buried treasure. I enjoyed every episode of Indiana Jones; and my favorite game show was Legends of the Hidden Temple.
Anything that spelled ‘new’, ‘unknown’, and ‘possibly dangerous’ was always up my alley. But only in recent years was I able to make these childhood fantasies come alive. Thanks to some saved up cash, several friends, and a burning desire to get myself into trouble, I can — finally — seek my own adventures.
Near — or Far, Here I Come!
As mentioned, there are two kinds of adventure. Just because you can’t afford a plane ticket doesn’t mean you can’t have one. American essayist, poet, and practical philosopher Henry David Thoreau, enjoyed ‘having adventures’ in his own backyard.
“We find only the world we look for.”
How is this possible? If you look at the synonyms of adventure, you’d find words such as: exploit, escapade, deed, feat, experience. Just because you haven’t circumvented the globe doesn’t mean you haven’t had an adventure.
Simply stepping outside your comfort zone can be a magnificent adventure in itself. When was the last time you learned something new, or met another soul? Did you try going out of your routine? Did you try that new restaurant down the street, or said hello to your neighbor? Have you tried getting your fortune told?
When was the last time you explored your own city? Urban landscapes, like the human body, change all the time. Roads are like veins, carrying important matter to where they need to be. Traverse them, and they can lead you to unfamiliar crevices or nooks.
Who knows, they may lead you to a path less traveled where you can (literally) get lost.
Alone or with Company?
If you DO get lost (either in your own thoughts or in a new place), do you want someone to share the experience with? Adventures are great on their own. But I find that the most memorable ones are spent with faces surrounding me.
I love extending a hand so we could all reach the mountaintops. I enjoy the soft sighs, the whispers, the giggles, and the shouts. For me, there’s nothing like climbing up and knowing someone would be above those steep rocks, waiting for you.
But I have also been on walks with myself. Alone in the woods, with nothing but the muffled sounds of my feet against dirt and dead leaves, I find comfort. I like to find my own path, keeping the sight of the river close as a guide. But soon, I delve deeper, until I only see rocks, trees, and shadows.
I guess I like to pretend that I’m braver than I really am. Even though I’ve walked this path several times, I want to pretend that this is a first. I am an explorer on uncharted territory: where the sun is my compass, and I am following the scents of freshly dug up earth.
One Adventure at a Time
In the future, I’d like to imagine humankind going on all sorts of crazy adventures. Picture yourself kayaking on gravity-free waters, or maybe free-falling right into a nebula, where stars are born. There would be space cruises, where you could follow the orbit of a comet.
But today, go on your own adventure. In fact, take BOTH. Envision your trail before you step on it. Throw away the map and measure the distance from the horizon. Walk out the door and dare to shatter your routine.
Even for just ONE day, walk down a different street.
Look up and notice that the sky is a different shade of blue from yesterday. Look at the faces of the people you pass by. Maybe you’ll see your neighbor, the old baker, or a gypsy lady. Feel the breeze on your skin and try to guess the smells that enter your nostrils. Close your eyes, and then open them again.
You’ll see that the world has changed a bit.
“You’re never too young to die.” ― Anthony Horowitz, Stormbreaker