Do you enjoy the sensations of experiencing activities you have never done before? I love the excitement, sensations and challenges of experiencing new opportunities life offers us. Since I lost my eyesight a few years ago I am blessed to experience many activities as if experiencing them for my first time. Participating in and experiencing activities with eyesight was much different then compared to the way I participate today. After awakening from a three month coma and losing my eyesight I temporarily lost the ability to walk for one year among losing the capabilities of performing many simple tasks for most people including speaking and feeding myself. Although this life changing medical situation provided plenty of opportunities to experience new activities and re-learn others, I continue to make an effort to look for new opportunities to experience life.
Opportunity for a New Activity:
Last month I was grateful to get the opportunity to experience two activities with a friend I had never done before, even when I had eyesight.
The first activity was taking a ferryboat ride from the Ferry Building in San Francisco (SF) CA to Sausalito CA crossing part of the bay to get there and back.
It was a bright clear warm sunny day without any wind when we arrived in San Francisco the day of our trip. We found a parking spot in a parking garage and walked to the Ferry Building on the Embarcadero at the foot of Market Street, which was a few blocks away from where we parked our car. As we quickly made our way through the Ferry Building my friend described some of the stores and the farmer’s market items in the building. Walking down the city streets and through the building allowed my senses to be filled with enjoyable sounds, smells and the sensation of a large city along with the scents of what smelled like delicious food lofting through the air in the farmers market. Before I knew it we were at the terminal where our ferryboat was to depart.
Boarding the Ferryboat:
To get to the ferryboat we walked across a ramp or two that lead to the boat. One of the ramps I was walking on swayed slightly from the movement of the waves at the point where one ramp connected to the other. This required more concentration on my part as I was walking to help prevent me from slipping off the ramp. After boarding the ferryboat my friend guided me through what seemed like a simple maze of corridors and ramps. Very soon we had reached our destination on the top level of the ferryboat near the front (bow) so we could sit outside in the sun and fresh air and be away from the noise of the engines.
Ferryboat Ride to Sausalito:
After we reached our destination on the top level I took a seat in the sun and the fresh bay air and began to happily anticipate the ride. I had never been on a ferryboat ride so I had no idea of what to expect. To my astonishment the ferryboat took off so smoothly and quietly I could hardly feel it moving. Once we picked up some speed I could tell we were moving by listening to the sounds of the mild waves lapping against the boat as we moved effortlessly through the water. As I sat in the sun hypnotized with intense relaxation I enjoyed the feel of the cool wind against my face.
My friend described the amazing scenery to me as we passed the Bay Bridge, Alcatraz, Angel Island, Coit Tower, San Francisco, Sausalito and the Golden Gate Bridge among many more incredible sights on this clear day with dazzling blue skies above.
As I sat on the ferryboat listening to the sounds of the few commuters, many tourists and feeling the gentle movement of the ferryboat I was so intensely relaxed I could not believe it. Although I wished the ferryboat ride would never end we soon arrived at Sausalito and it was time for a new adventure.
Walk and Lunch in Sausalito:
The second activity started after departing the ferryboat. We walked on paths near the water and by a park filled with people enjoying the town and excellent weather. Since it was lunchtime when our ferryboat docked, we soon found a great place to eat lunch with an outstanding view of the bay just outside the window from our table. After our relaxing and delicious lunch we felt refreshed so we walked through the town experiencing the many interesting sights. I had never been to Sausalito and as my friend described the water/bay, boats on the bay, buildings, old Victorian houses and the natural sites I took it all in my mind’s eye and could imagine it all clearly.
Ferryboat Ride Back to SF to Conclude my Trip:
After our lunch, leisurely walk and relaxing on a park bench in the sun listening to and talking with some of the friendly tourist from all over the world we took the ferryboat back to the Ferry Building in San Francisco. On the ride back the wind had picked up compared to our first bay crossing although still an extremely pleasant ride I wished was longer. To conclude our trip we had a relaxing walk back through the Ferry Building, Farmers Market and down the city streets ending up where we had parked our car.
My friend described my surroundings so well on our day trip along with the physical sensations all around me making me feel so entirely immersed in the visual sensations that I never once even thought about not having my eyesight.
Does anyone enjoy experiencing new activities? What did you learn from taking calculated risks to overcome any discomfort and what seemed like obstacles to experience joy, gratitude and inclusion? Does anyone have examples of when you had the chance to experience new activities life has to offer and chose to participate instead of sitting on the sideline?
I look forward to hearing your valuable thoughts and comments.
Global Dialogue Center