It is easy for me to lose my good perspective on life. I start worrying too much about work things. Those work activities start to seem like the most important things that I can be doing with my life. I worry too much about putting in the time to accomplish those tasks. I forget about the things that are actually important to me and provide a deeper meaning to my life.
My buddy and I went for a quick day hike during my lunch break a few weeks ago. We decided to go again. This time we went to a different location, a spot where I had gone for a short walk with my kids a year or two ago. I wanted to see more of that area.
Tom picked me up at work at about 11:40am and we were out of the car at the trailhead by 11:55am. It was a sunny day and cool (maybe 65°) with a slight breeze. Since I was coming from work I was wearing a golf-style shirt and heavyweight black jeans. I also brought my lightweight down sweater.
We started walking without a specific destination in mind. I had gone to the left with my kids and so suggested that we go to the right so we could explore a little. After a small uphill the trail started heading downhill and was clearly going to go down for a while. Since the walking was easy and the hills form a sort of wind shield I started to get warm very quickly and ended up carrying the down sweater.
As we wandered down the trail we had a meandering, enjoyable conversation about everything. I can assure that thoughts of my work were left behind at the office and we felt like we were a million miles away from the city of Los Angeles. It was refreshing to be outside with a great friend and enjoying my life!
As we were cruising down the hill we eventually go to an area that seemed like an alternate entrance to the open space area. To our left we could see a bit of a mountain and two people coming down the side of it. There were also some amazing looking rock formations. We headed off of the fire road and along a single track trail so we could go check out the rocks.
At some point we were paused. I could hear a sort of pervasive buzzing sound. We listened carefully and realized that we were hearing the collective hum of thousands of bees as they were flitting about their lives working much harder than we were. We walked up to the rock formations and saw some of the cracks and crevices where there were large numbers
of bees. We couldn’t see the hives, but we assumed they must be in there.
In the rocks there seemed to be a sort of trail going up into a cave. It looked like a fun spot to go into and explore. We had already been talking about bringing “the guys” back here another day so that we can share our new discovery with them. Since Tom needed to get back to pick his daughter up from school we decided to save the cave for another day.
As we started to walk back we heard other people talking and goofing around in the rocks. It seems like there must be a bit more to explore in there.
We continued on back to the car and I was back at my office at 1pm. I am amazed at how delightful it is to
sneak out of the office go out for a lunch break and escape from the city and work and people. Keeping that perspective on life is something that is important, but I don’t do as well as I’d like.
A couple of thoughts on preparation for the hike…I was wearing heavyweight, black denim pants. Not a good choice in the sun. It would have been nice to have brought shorts to the office and simply changed before and after. Also, a fanny pack or something would have been nice to hold my down sweater because I was just carrying it in my hand. I didn’t bring water because I knew we’d only be out for about an hour, but a little water would have been nice too. When we go back to explore the cave I need to bring some gloves too because my computer-programmer-fingertips will get destroyed by the rock.
Note: No work tasks or jobs were harmed in the making of this midday life-affirming hike. In fact, if anyone even noticed that I was out of the office they did not comment on it to me.
What do you do to help keep yourself having a good perspective on your life?