The Year of Magical Dreaming

Adventures Upstate in the Finger Lakes

I feel like the older I get the more reluctant I am to go on adventures, especially those that thrust me out of my comfort zone.

On Friday afternoon we left the sticky hot city, two acquaintances and I, with nearly six hours of potential awkward small talk stretched ahead of us. This is scary stuff for me, I’ve only recently come to realize!

I’m very particular in my routines, I’m learning, and even more so especially my roadtrip routines. I was prepared: plenty of food, open disclaimer about my frequent shi-shi habits, “don’t feel the need to entertain me” speech. Done. Done. And done.

Surprisingly, the time flew and we covered all topics from mindfulness to politics (quite the span!) I only nearly drove us off an exit once (it was a much sharper turn than “slight right,” thank you) and I took a very democratic poll before reversing on the highway a skosh to avoid a 15 min backup. All things my wife is used to, but could easily frighten any unsuspecting passenger.

I had to laugh when the entire carpool admitted, about hour five, that they’d been worried we wouldn’t be able to fill the space. I didn’t mention I had several podcasts cued, just in case.

It was our dear friend Dara’s 40th birthday, and we would all suffer an awkward car ride if we had to, but it wasn’t. We began acquaintances and arrived friends, as terrible a Hallmark card as that sounds.

We stayed in an awesome refurbished church, eleven of us and a dog, right on the lake–the 3rd finger to be exact.


I should have trusted that Dara would only have fabulous friends. The group was a perfect blend of laid back and low maintenance. Everyone felt comfortable doing exactly what they felt like doing: impromptu dance party? yes; wine? yes; card game? yes; more wine? yes. food and just a splash (or seven) more wine? yes and yes.

I even laid my towel on the floor for a stretch (pun intended) and danced to Prince from legs-up-the-wall/couch pose (a side effect of too many sausages for dinner.)

I don’t vacation with just anyone, so a group where I can lay on the floor and dance freely to–the artist formally and then again presently known as–Prince, with hardly a peep of mild concern, are my kinda folks!

We had so much fun dipping in the lake with the dog before and after our winery adventures. Even up north it was hot, and the cool down was divine, and a perfect wake-up for sluggish wine-to-blame mornings AND evenings.

Our limo bus was equipped with a stripper pole, just in case our afternoon called for a lap dance. Or, a very unsexy slide down the pole, as I like to do;)

poled limobus

Sunday I headed out early to visit another dear friend; this time on the first finger!

Kebra was my greatest cheerleader as I attempted the wake surf.

I’ve been wake boarding. I’m a surfer. So, I should have crushed wake surfing … womp, womp, not so much.

My gracious hosts were all kind in their compliments, but I wasn’t happy with my efforts. I’m nearly 40 and still haven’t learned how not to be very good at something, ha! Especially with a boat full of expecting faces.

wakesurfThis is a poser shot, as my brother likes to call them, taken in the short time while I was surfing;)

Again, out of my comfort zone, but full of motivation to go back and redeem myself!

The dive off the boat house roof, is still no small feat for me. I’ve learned over the years to just keep facing that silly fear. Sometimes it seems all I lose with each jump is my pants, but it’s not true–that much I know.

Failing forward, Kebra and I talked about on the deck. It might not be pretty, but it’s progress. Every. Damn. Time.

When I arrived home, 10 podcasts later, after a weekend away, Elisa asked before bed: What was your favorite part?

There were so many moments, it was hard to say.

In the end, I told her, it felt really good just to go, to try new things, to continually expand the comfort zone.

I don’t ever want to be so “set in my ways,” when just a few-ish hours away, another adventure awaits!

A great reminder to commit. Commit early, and get cozy with uncomfortable all along the way.

I leave you with this: What was the last thing you did that pushed you outside your comfort zone?


Much Love,