I am unable to count the number of times I let an experience escape my reach. That's because there are too many of them, including this weekend. I took the photo above just yesterday morning at a dude ranch in Greer, Ariz. I was in search of background material I need for a story I am writing about cabin retreats. I could have experienced a trail ride had I so wished, but I didn't wish, not this weekend. I had research on the brain. I needed specific information, and a trail ride really wasn't part of it.
So I left the ranch without a single ride on a horse or even on those mountain bikes they had lined up beside the woodworking barn. Can you believe it? Me, the BIKE lady, misses a ride! Oh, of course, I made sure to take a lot of pictures of the horses and the bicycles, but I didn't ride a single one. I'm slightly disappointed with myself, because I do try to take advantage of all the opportunities that come my way. But sometimes, one slips out of my hands. I let the horses walk away, so to speak.
I encourage you to be more mindful of the opportunities that open up before you.
Another good example:
On another road trip just a few days ago with my neighbor to visit other cabin properties in Sedona, and to show her the city for her first time, I watched as my neighbor approached a Navajo woman who had asked me to take a photo of her and her daughter standing in front of Bell Rock. I gladly obliged and then asked where they were from.
"The Four Corners area," the woman said.
"Did they move your house like they moved the monument?" I asked her, kidding about the recent news that said the Four Corners Monument is actually a few miles or so off of its current location. They built it on the wrong site, apparently.
The woman laughed, but once my friend (the neighbor) heard this woman say she actually lived on the Navajo Reservation, my friend moved in. We chatted with the two Navajo women for a few moments and learned the mother was a weaver and the daughter a student at Northern Arizona University, where I graduated. Then my friend stated she'd like to visit her home some time and requested the mother's address. I was shocked my friend would be so bold at first, but my friend gave her a business card (She's a dog sitter.), and I gave her mine, which shows the cover of my book on it--a photograph of Monument Valley. The woman relaxed and actually did give my friend her address, a P.O. Box number, with the caveat, "Write to me a few times, and we'll see."
The Navajo woman was smart to be cautious, I thought.
Later, in the car, I told my friend that maybe she shouldn't have asked, nor expected, a stranger to give a stranger her home address. But my friend pooh-poohed my admonition.
"I've let too many opportunities get away from me," she responded.
I realized, she had a good point. And who knows if these two women will ever hook up again. That's not really what's important. My friend saw an opportunity and did what she could to see if something might happen because of it.
We'll see what happens?
I think my friend's probably already written her first letter.
What kinds of opportunities have you let get away from you in your life? Can you name one that you think you'll still do some day? Please post a comment--especially all you mom's out there--and tell us what it is. By writing these things down, we sometimes become more willing to make sure they happen.
Happy Mother's Day!