Guy’s Night Out, Literally

Feb 28, 2015 View Comments by

P1060149Last spring, my wife made her annual trip to Florida with her sister and I was left with the tantalizing list of options that confront married folk when their spouses are away. Being alone once in a while is good, but the typical tug of war over what to do with my time began immediately. Should I do a major home improvement project and surprise her when she gets home? Should I take my own mini-vacation? Should I go bar hopping each night? (Just checking to see if Sharon was actually proof reading the blog.)

I finally opted for a mundane mix of work and yard maintenance, with an overnight camping trip on the KLR650 at the end of the week for my carrot-on-a-stick reward. I almost talked myself out of it because it simply didn’t sound like much fun by myself, but I found the resolve to pack the bike and go at the last minute.

The campground I chose was unusually quiet—I got a great campsite and a sense of truly being in the deep woods. I stayed at the site most of the time, catching up on some much needed introspection and the informal meditation that helps us take stock of things if we take the time to do it.

I’d recently learned of the passing of a couple of old acquaintances who I never seemed to find the time to call or visit, and memories of the things we’d done together during our high school years were re-played as I stared into the evening campfire. I realized with absolute clarity that time is the most valuable commodity we have, and what we choose to do with it defines our lives.

Setting and achieving goals is admirable, but it’s far too easy to slide our true desires into the box of time that’s out there ahead of us. And that’s exactly where they’ll stay if we don’t reel in the box and open it … now. For me, an occasional day or two on the bike alone and a quiet campground provides a much-needed break from the normal tedium of life’s juggling act and puts things into proper perspective. Some time alone may seem like a bitter pill to swallow at first, but with a little patience, you just may find that the bitter pill is the one that does the most good.


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