I’m kind of glad I didn’t get that warning.
Though I like to travel, like to try new food, like the idea of doing new things, I am a creature of habit and routine. I was more of a risk-taker at age four (hello, first upside-down roller coaster!) than I am now (hello, very real possibility that one could get stuck on an intense incline, or perhaps thrown from the ride while in motion), and have developed a slight fear of flying (thank you, LOST) even though I lovelovelove vacations (hello, everywhere I’m not right now).
This week has a mind of its own. It’s not settling for the usual coffee shop and writing routine, or anything at all involving the words usual or routine. I’m finding myself stretched in ways I’m not used to, ways that require me to trust that things will work out well (as opposed to me attempting to control them into working out well).
Not at all coincidentally, the need to trust came with my routine being broken up.
At 9pm on Sunday night, I planned a spontaneous trip to Houston to help out a friend, which meant driving there and flying home. By 10pm on Sunday night, the novelty of this-is-gonna-be-AWESOME was temporarily overshadowed by what-if-what-if-what-if? My plans were liquid, oozy, last-minute ones, not at all the concrete kind that make me feel at ease. Even though I was 95% sure things would be fine, that 5% of me worried.
Guess what? Things were fine. Better than fine, even.
Twenty-four hours after I decided to go, I had a) sung to an iPhone soundtrack¹ for five straight hours with my friend as we drove, b) eaten a chocolate-dipped ice cream cone instead of counting calories, c) witnessed an intense lightning storm without completely freaking out, d) hoped and trusted that Melissa would be able to arrange her plans so we could meet, even though we’d never spoken in person until I got into town, e) had a total blast with Melissa, who was indeed able to follow through (thank you Melissa’s boss and brother!), and f) hopped a plane home, despite my aforementioned LOST-induced plane crash fears. Monday rocked.
Tuesday didn’t quite get the memo that the routine was back in session, though.
You may have noticed, I went out on a limb yesterday and showed you my face, my Texan accent, and the fact that I like to make music. That was fun, but nonetheless a little unsettling. I mean, really — like Linda brought up in the comments, this is the age of American Idol. Every year, we see loads of people who can sing, and loads who are…well…borderline delusional?
These things are not scary in and of themselves, except for the fact that I’m not the most seasoned raw fish eater. I don’t mind the idea — I just get a little nervous, since I’ve spent more hours than I care to remember wearing gloves to arrange and serve Starbucks pastries. (As if that pumpkin loaf could really contaminate the doughnuts, right?)
Anyway: raw salmon. We made sashimi and Philadelphia rolls. They were DELICIOUS. I now have a fun new skill, and I practiced again today. (I also bought some cute new sushi plates, which means I will have incentive to practice more and more in the future.)
So. Since I’m still recovering from my week o’ spontaneity (which may not be over yet), this post isn’t completely relevant to writing. I’m sure I could spin it that way, though mainly, I just wanted to show you my pretty sushi pictures. Oh yeah, and to say that while routine is nice, it’s a good thing to go outside your comfort zone every once in a while. To trust, when you’re not sure you can. To try, when you’re not sure you want to.
¹Our road-trip set-list? A secret. Let’s just say that I might have been embarrassed to sing some of these songs (in public) even when they came out in the late Nineties. That’s why it was so much fun. CORRECTION: Amber convinced me to divulge this top-secret info. It’s in the comments.
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