Over winter break I was lucky enough to spend a few days in Cape Cod with a few of my friends. We had no real plans or goals. Just fun.
The first morning we woke up, it turned out to be a gorgeous day. 60s in the middle of January. My friend and I quickly dressed, laced up our running shoes, and ventured into the outdoors.
"Should I bring my phone?" my friend asked. "Nah, I think we're good".
Although we didn't know the area at all, I'd looked at google maps beforehand and had I rough plan for our run. It's a liberating feeling to leave your phone behind.
Less than a mile into the run we found a bike path we couldn't resist. Off the bike trail, we took a hiking trail we couldn't resist. The trail came out on a beach covered with ice cubes. We stopped to catch our breath and take it all in.
We came out on a road and then eventually reconnected to a completely new part of the bike path. After asking for directions, we proceeded to go the wrong way down the bike. Over bridges, through a cranberry bog, around a bird sanctuary. By the time we realized we had gone the wrong way, we were about nine miles into our fiveish mile run, and still about five miles away from the house where we had started our morning.
We stopped again to catch our breath. Despite the exhaustion from our run and not really knowing where we were, there was a certain peacefulness. We didn't want to run all the way back, and we weren't sure if we had any other option, but it had been a great morning. It wasn't even noon yet, and already it felt like we had explored so much of the Cape. And besides...we didn't have anything we had to do or anywhere to be.
photos courtesey of the wonderful Sasha Weilbaker
We hopped off the bike trail, and almost immediately a car slowed down to ask if we needed directions. Apparently, we looked a little lost. Before we knew it, this stranger was making room in his car to give us a ride back to our house. We piled in and were back at the house before half our friends were awake.
Never once did this man mention where he was headed. He didn't blink an eye when it came to going completely out of his way in the middle of the day to help two strangers he would likely never see again. It was a beautiful moment. I'm still trying to find ways I can pay his act of kindness forward.
Wander. Get lost. Talk to strangers. No phone needed.