Monday, November 15, 2010

Day 319 - Direction

I have no sense of direction. None.

I get around by memory. I remember landmarks, and from which direction I last saw them.

It's an interesting way to explore the world.

I'm just one misplaced memory away from being completely lost. All the time.

I'm continuously amazed when people know which way is west when they're inside a building. Taking an elevator, or stairs, completely disconnects me from the outside world. If I use either, I'm totally disoriented, and I don't even know it.

People with a sense of direction look at me with pity, as if I'd lost my sense of smell at an early age.

But really, not knowing what direction you're pointing is marvelous. Every day is an adventure, or at least a surprise.

Take today, for instance... I was running the trails by my office... ok, let's stop for one second so that I can acknowledge how lucky I am to have a 1.5mile trail loop just steps from my office, which itself is in the middle of the busiest commercial area of a moderately large city... I am very fortunate... ok, so I was running the trails and I took a turn that I would have sworn was leading me to the lake side.

Disappointed that I was cutting the run short, I trudged on, only to find myself facing 180 degrees from where I thought I was facing, toward the river. I trotted on, surprised, bewildered, and more than a little bemused, and amused.

Being momentarily disoriented is like a system reset on your reality. You are sure of something, and in an instant, that reality is shattered.

It's a good exercise for life, I think. Too often we are so sure of ourselves, of what we think is right, what we think of as the truth, what we think is just. But that's within our own conjecture of reality, isn't it. It's supported only by our understanding, knowledge, scope, experience.

We are baffled by what some people think or do, the choices they make. But we don't know what's going on in their life, or in their head. We think we do, but we don't.

Our ego wants to act as our compass. But it rarely points due north.

Ignore your compass, and look around, without bias or assumptions, and you might find that you aren't standing where you thought you were.

Good running,
Doug

Numbers: 2.6 miles on trails