After dropping my youngest off at the bus stop this morning, I found my mind drifting on the short drive home. A thought came out of nowhere: what if I turned right here instead of left, like I always do? I could go anywhere my car pointed. What would I find to do if I just kept driving? Where would I go?
If I kept pointed in that direction, I could drive to the mall and spend a day shopping and wandering, going where my interests took me, no agenda other than enjoyment and exploration. Solo lunch, perhaps, and browsing in the bookstore or gadget places, just for fun.
If I headed right again, and drove for a much longer way, I could get up north. The weather would be the same, but the scenery would be different, and there would be a multitude of places I could stop to rest or take a hike or eat or just hibernate.
If I turned all the way around, I could drive into the city and go to a museum or even go to a casino, just for the entertainment aspect. Gambling isn’t my thing, but it would be an opportunity to be pampered, maybe see a good show, and there would be plenty of chances for people-watching.
If I headed left from my initial off-course turn, I could head to the warmth of the south. Just keep driving until it was spring, gradually shedding outer layers of clothes until I could be warm in just my jeans and shirt. I could walk on a beach in my bare feet, eat spicy foods and drink cold drinks, and nap in the sun.
Of course, I didn’t do any of those things. Instead, I turned left, and left again into my own driveway. The whole world is always out there, just around the corner, but I chose the cup of coffee waiting for me and the life I have built. It always draws me home like a magnet.