On Monday, I got the brilliant flash of inspiration to write a post called: Where Ideas Come From…
and it would talk about how being in nature, cycling and hiking, and just getting out of the house are major idea-generating resources for me.
This is where I was when the idea came to me:
Look! I actually captured the flash of inspiration going into my brain.
Yes, I was on a sort of mountaintop (a ridge near Mt. Tamalpais – that’s in Marin County, California – just over the Golden Gate bridge from San Francisco).
Since I live in an old warehouse when in Marin, with no yard whatsoever (and no lawn mowing, alas!) these hills and trails and groves of redwood, oak, madrone and bay trees that make up the Marin open space are what I most affectionately refer to as: my backyard.
My daily habit is to wander out into the woods on foot or by bike and come to my senses. Breathe in the air (in all weather, but in Northern California the weather is nearly always perfect).
Getting out of the studio, off the computer and into nature, even if only a slow walk through town (also with many fine trees to admire) is what I think of as: recess.
This daily habit is where so many of my ideas come from. Captured in my portable notebook, or on voice memos and photos on my iphone.
So many ideas are visual, it’s easier to take snapshots.
The notes help me remember what I was thinking. It all goes by in a blur.
On Monday, I had a good stream of ideas flowing for clients. Yay! I actually stopped and texted voice message ideas right from the mountaintop. My cellular service blinking in and out of one scant bar of reception.
Ta da! I felt like such a creative genius. I’m riding my bike and getting my requisite cardio and having fun and getting work done. All at the same time. This creative entrepreneur thing rocks!
And so in that happy place of accomplishment, I coasted down the mountain (this is the super fun reward part of all that uphill) feeling the perfection of the day.
Celebrating accomplishment is something I’ve been working on these last few weeks, along with the notion of having pleasurable things to look forward to in the day.
Islands of pleasure in the midst of the work day. Rewards for the effort. Recess.
I was going to write: adult recess.
But then you’d have other sorts of pictures probably floating around in your mind (at least I did), and so I’ll just leave it at recess.
Except now I’ve already mentioned adult recess. Well, that’s a good thing, too. But that’s all I’m going to say about that.
Keeping it G-rated here, remember?
(G is for grandma. She reads this.)
My old habit is to not get out nearly enough, or sit and crank through many solid hours of work at a time. Until my body contorts with the bad posture and furrowed brow of too much screen time.
This is what is on my mind, this inspirational blog post — and how I just had one of the best bike rides of the summer…
I got hit by a car on my bike, taking the streets back home through town.
This is where my actual crash helmet came in handy.
When I got home, I was still in shock.
The next morning, I filed the following “status update” on Facebook.
Surely my near-death experience was worthy of a status update? Yes?
The status update says:
In that sobering space of mind when you emerge from a wreck with only scrapes and bruises and nothing missing or broken.
Yesterday afternoon, a beautiful hot day here in Fairfax, Ca. An early morning mastermind with Cynthia Morris and Jennifer Boykin. Lots of writings (sales page smackdowns for clients!).
Then I asked: What am I doing for pleasure next?
Idea: Recess! I took my mountain bike out for a ride, to face my “training hill”. Powered up and over with more strength than ever. Good. Really good.
Coasting through a redwood path, I got lots more ideas in the writing realm. Even stopped to send a voice memo before I lost the idea.
Coming home on town streets. Me and my bike versus an opening SUV door. Not good.
Suddenly, in less than a breath, I am a layer cake: pavement, my leg, my bike, other limbs (I think), pinned under and between a BMW (stopped at the corner and I prayed not about to move). Did the driver see me go down? Didn’t know.
Three or four people (angels) untangled me from the wreck. State of shock. Everything working, I think even my bike is OK. SUV driver kindly took me and bike home, stopping at pharmacy for first aid supplies for bleeding parts – also not bad at all.
Today. Every muscle hurts and I’m moving in slow motion. But incredibly grateful for soft-ish landings, the kindness of strangers, and driver not on his cell phone, (so aware I was under his nice car), and not having my body or head in a cast.
Wear your helmets, kids! xoxo
In a little while this “nine-lives” lucky factor will wear off, so I wanted to get this down now.
Getting back on the bike later today, because I’m more than a little nervous to ride again.
What I love about Facebook is the outpouring of love and kindness that is there when you need it.
(Same thing for blogging and emailing y’all!)
I did get back on my bike yesterday, as I promised. A very short ride to the library, feeling achey and tentative all the way.
The last time I had a big bike accident I stopped riding for years. I didn’t want that to happen again.
I am keeping a wide berth between me a parked cars, whenever possible.
The way bike lanes work, though, is that they are snug on the road between moving traffic and parked cars. If there are bike lanes at all. Clearly not a perfect system.
And for a few days I’ll have to hobble around the trails on foot.
The leg that got pinned under my bike is like a 360 degree bruise. I’m so happy it’s still working, though, just damn sore.
One email reply to a friend who heard the news went back to her:
I’m good. Nothing broke and everything sore.
Then: maybe that’s a metaphor for certain parts of the creative process. Or something.
Meanwhile, RocketMan has promised to deliver a brand new crash bike helmet.
Which I will probably refer to from now on as: my thinking cap.
And that’s where my ideas are coming from these days.
Whee! Buckle up!