Thursday, 21 February 2013

It's Time To Hit The Road

It's another sunny day. The sky is clear and the air is crisp. The junkos are jumping about in the limbs of the tree that grows directly in front of my living room window. I am on the third floor and I can almost see the top of the tree. There are dozens of pine cones and these birds drop by on a daily basis. It is a good start to the day.

I made a decision about work. I am going to "retire" soon. It's not that I no longer love my work. I do. It's not that my work is not rewarding; it is the most rewarding work I have ever done. I work in a great place with wonderfully supportive people. I get to do amazing things in my work and I am respected. I am not leaving because I am unhappy.

A diagnosis of ALS kind of puts some pressure on a few things. I have a limited shelf life. While most of my bucket list items are checked off, there are some things I would like to do while I still can. I want to do some road trips, to drive a few highways I have not yet traveled, to see a few places yet unknown. Over the last few weeks these have bubbled higher in my conscience. They have moved from ideas to urgencies.

Travel is big on my mind these days. It might be that I am just running away, escaping from the reality of my existence here in Calgary. It might be that the exploring spirit which has always been part of me is now rearing its head and demanding attention. It doesn't really matter. I have decided I want to hit the road.

I cannot go immediately. Regardless of where I am in my life, I have responsibilities. ALS does not give me a free pass. There are things I feel I need to have in place before I wander off. There are things at work that are important to me, things I want to get done. I need to clear up some personal issues and financial things before I head out. I have a few tasks to do. I won't leave tomorrow, but soon.

Then, I am going south for a while. How far? I don't really know. I had a timeline once, when I thought I would do a road trip and then come back to work. Now I am not so sure. Now, perhaps for the first time in my life, I am free to go where I want to go and do what I want to do with no return constraint.

Or perhaps I have always been that way but was too busy to notice.

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