In the summer months, the air in my house gets thick with more of the same.
It’s why I’ve started a discipline of writing in a local coffee shop once a week. I learn to tune out the whir of the coffee grinder, the slam of the cash register door, the crinkle of dollar bills pulled from the pockets of sunburned tourists when I can’t avoid the yawn of my son in the adjacent room down the hall from my desk.
Seated alone at a round table for two, I notice a young girl wearing a bikini under a lavender t-shirt with fringe shifting over her tan stomach; her long locks swept up in a careless bun on the top of her head. She saunters to the counter in flip-flops; backpack slung over her shoulder, a drinking straw balanced on her lower lip, and orders a Caramel Macchiato. I’m transfixed by her confidence.
Obviously, I’m writing about it.
Write from where you are. It’s a phrase I’m mulling from Julia Cameron’s, Right to Write. It helps the words flow and gives permission to let go of things needing to be perfect. And perhaps it’s a good mantra for other things too like parenting, cooking, exercising, housekeeping, or even making new friends.
I’ve made a few friends sitting in this coffee shop. A young English mother taking time out from an office move. Enjoying a coffee and clicking keys on a laptop, when her baby revolts from the carriage between us. Our conversation leads to a discovery. We have mutual friends. In England.
I started writing this post surrounded by strangers in a coffee shop and finished it in between making breakfast for three teen boys and lobbing their wet swimsuits in plastic bags. On the back end of writing three blog posts because the word river was running swift.
I’m learning something perhaps you already know. If you find yourself in the same place navigating familiar circumstances for an extended period, you have a chalkboard full of your own thoughts that you would just as soon erase. It’s time for a change of perspective.
Begin from where you are and live like the world is an open invitation.
You don’t need to be in a fancy spot or sitting in the perfect nook to be inspired. He’s with you wherever you go, unfurling your tired map. The destination isn’t the point; it’s the one holding down the corners of adventure, waiting for you to make the first move.
How do you keep perspective in the summer?
I’m on vacation with my family this week, where my cell phone is turned off and the internet is nowhere to be found in our cottage. My response to your comments will be slow, but I’m thankful you joined me here.