Author’s Note: I wrote this awhile ago and promptly forgot it. When I found it again, it resonated really strongly with me, so let’s pretend that it’s still summer and I’m still camping. Even though I turned the heat on yesterday.
In between goals is a thing called life, that has to be lived and enjoyed.
- Sid Caesar
A few weekends ago we went camping in Sierra City for one of my favorite events of the summer, the Downieville Classic. Although I’m not a mountain biker, the atmosphere is spectacular. How can you not love a gathering centered around the mountains, beer and river jumping?
But I was distracted. I had to get everything ready for the trip. (Being gluten-intolerant and dairy-intolerant make camping a bit more challenging.)
On top of that, I’d recently taken a big step toward working on my business without a part-time gig to pay those pesky bills. And I needed to get my book out to a few more publishers that week if I was going to meet my goals.
As I headed into what was supposed to be the most carefree weekend of my summer (no cell phone service, no Internet, smoke signals only please) I was creating a lot of stress for myself, all in the name of getting things taken care of.
Then we headed toward the woods. After dodging a runaway cooler on the highway and pondering the contents of Pandora’s Box in the men’s restroom along I-5, we arrived at our campsite around midnight. Setting up camp under a full moon and stunning stars didn’t erase my stress, but it definitely helped.
But my stress did eventually fade, and what did it? Jumping off rocks into the river. Crocheting in the shade on an 80 degree afternoon. Peeing in the woods. And of course, new music:
The Soul Rebels are ridiculous, and you should listen to the whole album. It’s called Unlock Your Mind (great title, huh?). When I started listening to them, I just realized how seriously I was taking myself and my obligations.
It’s good to take your ambitions seriously, but not too seriously. Or they just suck the fun out of life. And that’s really what we’re all here to do. Have fun and live life.
For me that means jumping off larger and larger rocks into the river, seeing more live music and knitting for hours without feeling slightly guilty about it.