outside

Adventures in going out: Week 23

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laurel_acres

The More than meets the eye edition.

This post can only mean one thing, I have succeeded in going in time and have successfully changed the past, without destroying the present. As far as  I know.  However I may have caused the rise of Donald Trump, sorry about that, but hey, I had fun time traveling…

Anyways, this is now week 23. Which, IMHO, is more exciting than the Summer Olympics. It also means it’s another outing into the wilds with only my boomerang, and slingshot. This week I started a little earlier than usual. On Thursday I went out to scope out a store 30 minutes away. People from my meditation class told me about this place, and invited me to a meetup there this coming Thursday, so I decided to check it out ahead of time. Picture that. Going to a random meetup, at a random building, with random people. A year ago that would have sent a shiver up my spine, and I would have been afraid that I had bitten off more than I could chew. I love being at a place where I do not have to hesitate about such a thing, or worry about it, or think of ways to getting out of it. Now I can go out there, and have fun, and meet new people. They are even having an 8 week class there starting in September that I am very interested in attending. I am doing so much, it’s like I am making up for lost time. The store was a lovely little store, easy to get to, and near places I have been before.

Then today I decided to take myself out again and get some fresh air, and some sunshine. Even if it was a little warmer than my liking. I went to a local park, Laurel Acres Park, and walked around for a little bit.Of course while there I ran into someone I work with, that works in one of my stores. The one thing people don’t really want to run into on their day off, people from work. At least I get on well with this individual, and was not my boss. We talked some video games, and then we went our separate ways. While walking out there it looked like the Zombie Apocalypse was upon us, as everyone was walking staring down at their cell phones, transfixed, and pretty much oblivious to the world around them. Kind of sad how dependent we are on technology.

All in all it has been a good week, and I look forward to meeting up with some friends, and make some new ones. The year has been incredible for me. It has shown me I can accomplish much in life, all I have to do is try. It gives me hope for other dreams that I put off for so long, like illustrating a children’s book. One of my life long dreams. And now, I have the courage, and the faith, to work to one day achieve it. Whether it takes me 2, 5, or 10 years. I have hope that one day I will reach that goal. Just need to hone my art to get it to a professional level. I can do that. If I can go on vacation by myself, a few states away, I can do this.

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Adventures in going out: Week 22

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The I’ll gladly pay you Tuesday for a Hamburger today edition.

This post is my 50th blog post on this site. Toot toot, my own horn. Take that, procrastination.

Another week is coming to an end, and with it, the ending of a month as well. I can hardly believe that it is going to be August in two days. It feels/seems like just last month was January. This year has been rushing by, and I have been enjoying every moment of it. For a change. A very nice change. This year has been, the best year of my life. It is only going to get better for me. I have so much planned for this year, and there will be so much more to do and see. And I can not wait.

This week was the last of my meditation group that I started 8 weeks ago. A year ago I would have never thought it was possible to attend such a thing. It has been an incredible experience and I have met so many like minded people, and am building great friendships with these people. After our last class we all went out to a dinner to get some tea. It was such a freeing experience to be able to go out to that dinner with them, and have fun. Not having to sweat and be anxious about the idea of it. Not having to think of ways that I could get out of it. Not being fearful and anxious all the way to it. I was fine, and looked forward to it. Hopefully we will get to do that again more often. That there could have been enough of an outing for my weekly adventures, but I did not stop there.

The weather has not been that cooperative for me these past few days. It’s been raining, and thunder storming, and calling for floods, which has created a looming rain cloud over what I could or would do. See what I did there? I had no actual plans to where I was going so I thought I’d revisit a place that I went to in the start of my journey. Historic Smithville Park. So see how things are there now and see it again. Since during that time of this journey I was still getting my feet wet in going out. After getting near to this place I saw that there was no cars at it. Last time I was there, there was tons of cars, and activity. I don’t know if the place was closed or what. I was afraid to find out. I’ve seen scary movies. The good looking blond is always the first to go. So I didn’t want to take my chances in the woods, alone. Last time I did that. I almost never found my car again. So I decided to go somewhere else. I then remembered a store that the people from my class told me about, and so I went out to check it out. I was not intending to really spend money today, so I went in, trying to save my money.. That… Did not work out so well. This place had lots of lovely stuff, that I could not resist and ended up spending 21 bucks. I could have easily spent more than that. Especially when there was an old toy toy store next door to it. With old He-Man toys from the 80’s on display. I did good and did not spend money there. One day you will be mine again, Castle Grayskull. I was then going to go to the local park where I was, but it started to start to rain some. So I went and did some more shopping before returning home, and then taking the dog for a walk outside.

All and all it was an adventurous day, and I did not spend all that much. More than I originally intended do. You live and you learn.

Life is a party now…

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Tonight was an outing that was different than what I normally do for my weekly adventures. This time it was a family birthday party. And it was a public place, that was outside.  So not only would I be going out, there would be other people there. People I don’t really know, or even how many would be there. The idea of this in the past would be enough to create so much anxiety, that I would think about various ways to get out of it. Now with the way my life has been, how much I have improved my health, and the way I am changing my whole life, I was able to go out to a birthday party with family, and their friends, and go out and enjoy myself. Something I would not be able to do before. If I did do it, I was suffering quietly on the inside. The one thing about anxiety/panic is that we suffered while you didn’t even know it. We wondered how long we would be there, and more aptly, how long do we feel obligated to stay there before we can escape from this place and never come back. It’s even worse when it’s loved ones as you feel like you are letting them down. Being a disappointment to them. We already suffer with worry with what others think of us, now we are making it worse for ourselves.

Tonight was not like that. Tonight was different. Tonight I had freedom. I got to live. I got to spend some time with my family, and I went outside in the process. I went to Woodford Cedar Run Wildlife Refuge, in Medford. (That title is a mouthful.)  I did not have to leave early. I was not checking my watch and counting down the minutes. Yes, I have done that. When I went on vacation years ago with family, I was counting the time down until I got home. That’s how bad I was living in the past. It was a horrible time for me. So now to be able to do this, to go out, to enjoy myself. It is incredible. I am loving every moment of it. I got to see some frogs, and some birds.. Lots, and lots of birds. My favorite was the Falcon, Artemis. I am a mythology geek. I never thought I would be able to go to a place like this, to go on a nature hike with people, walk around, look at animals, sit around a fire, and enjoy myself. To have fun. To be happy. I never would have thought it was possible to be happy. I am glad the universe proved me so wrong with that one. So wrong.

I will say I was disappointed that all the animals were in caged in enclosures, I was so hoping to see the animals out in the wilds. Like Pokemon.. I suppose it’s not too bad. Since they had some snakes there. I would have probably passed out had I come across one of those in the wild.

This post.. Has no puns in it. That’s not puny at all.

Boom! Nailed it.

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Adventures in going out: Week 19

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The scientific progress goes boink edition.

 

redbank_3The adventure train just keeps on chugging along. Chug -a- chug -a- chew – chew. The train got hungry there at the end. I am so close to the 20th week of adventuring which would be five months. Holy smokes, Batman. Before heading out I checked my weather app to see what I would be contending with. It was calling for thunderstorms today which put a cloud upon what I could do outside. (All puns intended.) I thought about just doing something indoors but that was not tickling my fancy. Plus I could not get a ticket to the movie The Secret Life of pets. So I opted to do something somewhat local and go outside and have some fun. Today was the first cool day in a week as we were facing a heat wave, and I have never been a fan of heat. I decided to do something local-ish that I could think of and decided to go to Red Bank Battlefield again. I know it’s my third time there. I don’t know what it is. I just… Like it there. Something about it. It feels comfortable to me. Very familiar. I’ve never been in the military or even am a violent person. I’m passive and don’t believe in violence. Perhaps it’s a past life of mine, if such a thing exists.

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I am also a nerd and since Pokemon Go just came out, I had to take it with me, and see what I could find at the park. I was excited to do so. Yep, I am a nerd. I’m a keeper ladies. **wink wink. Nudge nudge.** Pokemon Go tricking nerds into going outside and getting some exercise in the guise of collecting Pokemon. Ironically enough something like Pokemon Go is actually a great tool for someone who deals with anxiety and agoraphobia, and things like that. Anything that can help them go out of their comfort zone to new places is a great thing. Who knows this may help me go out even further in life to more places than I thought of. Of course you end up staring at your phones all day, but we did that anyways. Sure enough at Red Bank Battlefield was a ton of people staring at their phones trying to collect Pokemon. I kid you not. You could hear them all talking about it, and see it on their screens. Even a couple passed me and said, “I know you what are doing.” It could even be a tool to get people to talk to each other. So for people like me these types of things that are fun to play can have so many more benefits than they even thought about.

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After catching some Pokemon and enjoying the view and the scenery there I heading out of the park and drove to another place to go and enjoy. I stopped at place called Strawbridge Lake and just walked around a little, saw some fish jumping and enjoyed the atmosphere. I have not been there in a probably a decade. Happens when you used to not get out much. There is just something so lovely and soothing being in nature. It’s very calming and happy. It is literally my happy place. Of course the servers of the game I was playing was offline I had to actually put my phone down. I know that is like a fate worse than death these days. We spent the major part of our lives without phones, and the internet on phones and texting on phones, and now we can’t put them down. Even at the dinner table we are starting at them. We are so disconnected from the real world and life now.

When I got to the lake I noticed a handicap parking spot. All the spots were lined in a row. The same row. On the end was the handicap spot. Which got me to wondering. What is it providing easy access to? The tree? The trash can? It’s not any closer to the lake than  any other spot. I’d get it if all the other spots were behind it, but they were all lined in a row. After enjoying the scenery I heading back home, after spending a few hours outside enjoying myself, life, and nature. It was a perfect day.

I’m hoping next week to be able to visit a Vietnam Memorial that is in the state. That should be a fun time. And will be something new. Just think of all the Pokemon I could catch out there… Yep, I’m that much of a nerd.

 

 

 

Adventures in going out: Week 15

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The big 15… 1-5. What a number to arrive at. What a place to be at in life. Metaphorically and literally. Never thought I’d say that in this life. There was  not much planned for this weekend as I was not sure what the weather was going to like. One day it’s raining. One day is cold out. It’s as if Mother Nature has gotten drunk and forgotten what she was doing. We’ve all been there. Like going into the other room for something and forgot why we went in there. I rented a movie today and when I left the store and was driving home, I realized I forgot to pick it up. I even glanced at the kiosk too.

Since there was not much going on this week and nothing really planned. I am keeping my trips kind of thrifty to not really spend a ton of money as I am traveling to Virginia in two weeks to visit the Smithsonian. So I opted to just do some aimless driving around and do some window shopping. That took me back. I used to do that all the time when I was younger. I used to love just going to the mall and looking at all the things I wanted, and would like to have. Yet never had the money to buy. As a kid it was if you wanted something you better hoped Santa brought it for you. It was always for us growing up, maybe for Christmas. Even if that was last month.

So today I spent a few hours just driving around aimlessly and visiting some random stores. A book store, and a comic book shoppe. It was a nice and relaxing day in the car, with some old school jams on the iPod, Das Efx and some Onyx, even some MC. Hammer in the mix. Can’t touch this just brings out the groove in me… I’m just kidding, as a white guy, I have no groove. Nor can I jump. The weather stayed nice, albeit a little too warm for my liking, but it was a very nice day nonetheless. Low key. Outside. On the road. Making memories. What more could one ask for in life? I had forgotten how much joy and fun it can be to just do nothing while doing something. For the bulk of my teen and adult life the “doing nothing” literally meant doing nothing. Today it meant something.

And it was good.

 

Adventures in going out: Week 10

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lego_woodyThe adventures keep on going on. This week’s adventure started earlier. I would go out on Sunday. I would go to Lego Brick Fest, in Oaks, PA. I have never heard of Oaks, Pa, before this trip. It was a last minute thing as my sister-in-law told me about the place and that they had tickets for it. So I snagged a ticket, and went out with them and their family.

The drive out there was not too bad, it was an hour ride, and it was lightly drizzling, but that would not stop us from going to have fun. The hardest part for me, was not being there, or driving there, believe it or not, but in not spending a ton of money there. There were so many cool things to buy. From Aladdin’s Genie, to various characters of this and that. I was able to snag a Lego Flash, as I have become a big fan of the Flash, thanks to the new TV Show on CW. I would have liked a Lego Harry Potter, but could not find one. Yes, I am that big of a nerd. True story, I am now starting to read the books. (Believe it or not I have not read all the books, but I have seen and own all the movies. Is that weird? Don’t answer that.)

lego_live
I will say this place was not what I was expecting for some reason. I was expecting something more, I dunno professional looking. This was more like an exhibition center with lots of exhibits on display. Not that there is anything wrong with that. There was also some other exhibits there, such as a Ghost Busters exhibit, with people dressed as Ghost Busters you could tag pics with, along with an Ecto1. There was also replica of the jeep from Jurassic Park, as well as a DeLoreon. That one, you could pay 10 bucks to take a picture of it, and sit inside. I was not impressed with that setup. But I took a picture of it anyways. So there.

Lego_ecto1

All and all it was a fun day out with my family, something I was not able to do a lot of in the past. It is nice to finally be creating wonderful memories that will last a lifetime, and create a better life for myself. Today, Saturday, I will have a more relaxing adventure as I go out to dinner and to the movies to see, Captain America: Civil War. I don’t think I have ever done dinner and a movie before. Because of the way my stomach always worked in the past eating before hand, and then sitting for a few hours in a theater always gave me anxiety and panic just thinking about it. I would never do that. With my health vastly improving I thought I would push my bounds and try some thing different.  I’ve done movie, than a dinner. So this will be a different experience for me. New things, right.

lego_flash

 

Adventures in Going Out: Week 6 – Pt. 2

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Devil’s Tower

This week was a huge week for me in my weekly adventures in pushing myself further and further, and working through my anxiety/panic attacks, so I can live a ‘normal’ life. Since I was off Monday, I went out on Monday, which would still qualify as my weekly adventure in going out… But I was not gonna just fall into my old ways and only go out that one time when Saturday in my normal time for going out.

So that is what I did. I decided to go out again today, for my second time. I was not sure on where I was going or how many options I was gonna have, as it was said to Snow today… Yep, that’s right. Snow in April. Is it still considered Winter weather in Spring even if it’s snow, or does it become Spring Weather?

After mulling over a couple ideas of where to go, I decided to go and see Devil’s Tower in Alpine NJ, today. It has an interesting history behind it. A plantation farmer erected it for his wife, so she could see the NY skyline. One day she went up the tower and found her husband with another one, so she threw herself off the tower. It is said that she still haunts the place. That was really what interested me in seeing it. To see if there was any ghosts there. I am interested in that type of stuff. I plan and hope to check out more types of places like that during my adventures. I am really fascinated by this kind of stuff. Who knows maybe one day I’ll go a ghost investigation with a group of paranormal investigators. That would be something. As well as something I never even considered before, or being able to do. Now that things are changing for me, all types of doors are opening for me. And I am loving every second of it.

This voyage was a big one because it was a long, long ride to it. This was about a little over 2 hours to get there. Which can seem like forever for a person that has gone through the struggles and battles of anxiety. At around over an hour or so of driving and looking at the towns I got to that point of, holy crap! This is really happening. I am so far from my home. This is real. I did not panic during that. I did not turn around, or stop. Which is a blessing compared to the past, where I would have gone mental, and wigged out. I was getting really close to NY, and at times I thought I was going to end up there. As it felt like my GPS was sending me there. Luckily I did not get into NY. It was a lovely tower to see. Sadly it is not open to see the insides, it is fenced off, with a camera, and a no trespassing sign. So all I could do was snap a few pictures. Admire my view, and be proud of getting there. Before heading back home. My legs were so tired from being in the car like that. But it was a great triumph for me, and will help me go even further with myself and my journeys. Sadly, I did not see any ghosts and this place. Though I did have that eerie feeling of being watched from the tower. But that could have been my own preconceived notions of the place being haunted and made myself feel like it was.

I returned home and got some grapes to celebrate my victory. I love me some grapes.

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