Up, up, and away

It was a bright and clear day. Great outdoors, but I had a lot of reading to do and some work to catch up on. Just the idea of staying tied to my computer when I could free myself and chase the air, made me sulk. I wished I was asleep instead.

As I sat on the bed unmotivated even by the brilliant book in front of me, I decided to grab some coffee. And thus began my awakening. After a quick search for the perfect restaurant for lunch, I started gulping down my liquid wake up call and finished my work. A day’s work done in a few hours.

Delatorre’s was perfect for authentic Italian food. Would recommend it, in case you’re ever in Pleasanton, California.

Awakening

 

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Street smarts

I often vent (offline) about living in a pedestrian-hating city. I think it’s horrible. Some of the roads are full of potholes, mud puddles, slippery plastic bags mingled with garbage, and are just plain un-walkable. Then there’re vehicles and senseless drivers who almost brush against you when you walk. Oh, and on an average day, you’d hear at least fifty different honking frequencies over the course of a five-minute walk.

It’s horrible. That’s why few people walk and advocate for walking as a way of commute. Apart from the mental and the noise pollution, you’d also have air pollution and nostril violation.

As you can see, I love ranting about the street conditions in my area.

A couple of days ago, however, I saw something that put a different perspective in light. A group of women walked with absolute disregard for the vehicles whizzing by them. As a regular walker myself, I make sure I don’t get in the motorists’ way, even by accident. I’d walk on uneven rocks on the side of the road just to avoid the speeding drivers.

These women, though, cared not one bit. They waved their arms in the air talking while they waited to cross the busy highway (freeway) on which trucks cruise every day. Though obvious, they were distracting the driver sending all kinds of mixed signals. Drivers can’t brake at whim, and when someone puts their hand out, it seems to them as if that pedestrian would jump onto the moving vehicle.

I learnt this during my front-seat rides while my brother drove. He’d often swear at pedestrians who run into the street without warning. Though they’re often confident that they can cross the street without getting hit, it always scares the person behind the wheel.

When I saw the women do the same, I wondered how wrong I am to blame only the motorists. We pedestrians aren’t any better.

We need more stringent road rules and decent infrastructure.

Side note and moment of epiphany: From complaining about the masses I’ve begun complain about the authority. How mature of me.


P.S: I describe my observations of the city I live in. I’m aware that it isn’t the same everywhere else. I’ve walked through so many streets in California dropping my jaw at the street sense there. (Portland, I’m looking at you.)

Brighten the day, lighten the mood

Nothing is more attractive than clever wit. Throw in some wine, and you’ve got yourself a winner. I found this in Seattle’s infamous Pike Place Market. It brought a smile on my face, brightened my day, and lightened my mood. I’m sure it does the same to you.

Brighten-the-day,-lighten-the-mood

Sun chaser

I’d go to any lengths to catch the sun at its brightest—even if it meant staying up late or waking up well before the wee hours of morning. And so with this undeniable obsession comes the craving to fill up my gallery with pictures of the sun from where ever I travel. During my visit to Portland, I managed to grab this little scene. It’s not the most stunning sunset I’ve seen, but it’s the sunset, and catching it is always stunning.

Sun chaser

 

Moments to memorise

Our most beautiful moments come when we least expect it. Sometimes, we may spend all our lives searching for happiness and contentment when all the while it’s just round the corner without us realising it.

The reason: we pursue. Our society always taught us to chase life, and to strive to make our own path. To create our own luck, and to forge ourselves the future we dream of. And so we do. We toil day in and out, focussing on the one thing that we think matters the most to us, while we miss out on the small everyday, ever-present, pleasures coexisting with us.

Aiming only for the destination, we fail to appreciate the journey. Serene experiences stem from absolute lack of preparedness. Spontaneous actions, unplanned adventures, bring us serendipitous memories. We don’t always have to create a path—it’s okay once a while to let an unknown path lead us where it may. It’s the unexpected joys of spotting a squirrel or running into a friend that makes any journey worth taking.

When we begin to notice, and let nature influence our course of action, we grow. We learn from the people we meet, the conversations we have, and the coffee we share. And all these occur by allowing things to happen as they do, and not jumping to rash conclusions. For when we are open-minded, devoid of judgement, and fearless to embrace unfamiliarity, we find meaning in this trip called life.