It's that time of year, when summer is over, the mornings become cooler, and the kids go back to school. Most of us are getting back into our normal routines but some of us, like my son, are beginning new ones. He has started secondary school this week and he, like most of his friends, has been very excited about the start of this new phase of their lives. With it comes new freedoms and responsibilities, like walking to and from school on his own and with his friends, and managing his own learning and homework. Seeing him enter into this thing which to him is so new, different, interesting and a little scary is a reminder of the need for adventure no matter if it's small or large.
I've been in my current job for 10 years. It's a good job. It has good parts and bad parts. I have a strong routine, both weekly and through the academic year, but after 10 years it does get a little boring. And routine. When we get to this stage remembering how it felt to start a new school or a new job kicks something inside.
It's said that planning the holiday is as beneficial for you as taking the holiday. Thinking ahead and having something to look forward to are important to us. Adventure fits in well here and I've used this myself for a number of years. In climbing I'd have a hard or scary route in mind that I'd want to do, and I'd wait for the right weather, the right time, or the right partner to do it with. For the last few years I'd been thinking about running around the Gower and this played in my mind in every long run that I did. I eventually did it last autumn when the weather, tides and my own physical robustness all came together at the right time. A personal adventure and mental challenge as much as physical. I learnt some things about myself on that run.
I ended my 2014 triathlon racing season yesterday at Bala and I'm already reflecting on the race, the season, my preparation, and looking to 2015 and the autumn and winter that I can use to get ready to go faster. I wasn't sparkling yesterday but mentally I did fairly well. It's not a bad thing to end a season on an average performance as it gives me a bigger kick to look at what I'm doing and provokes me to do it better. Every race is an adventure, and working towards them is a trek. I might say "quest" but as a WoW player that means something different to me than it does to you.
Winter is coming and it's time to look for adventures.