It is Friday 5:00pm and I finally leave work and ready for a couple of days off over the weekend. Driving home, you can feel the tension from the week of work leave and replaced with the thoughts of a relaxing couple of days at home. Suddenly, you come to a stop! The stop lingers for a bit and you can see the light is still green…what does that mean? Why aren’t we moving? You tap the steering wheel and try to rise in your seat to look about. Switching the radio to the traffic report, I hear that there is a four car pile up on the bridge that takes me home. The calm is replaced by an uneasy tension.
I sit in traffic and we don’t really move. Inching forward, I can feel a step closer to home, but still a long way to go. People are cramming and trying to cut in. Tension has risen again and I try to find holes to make a few more strides home. Not able to move, I take a side street and another path…what are you thinking, of course others have thought of this and you are now in a new grid lock. Still not able to advance, taking another side street, I realize it is a dead end street and I have to try and get back.
I know that I have to make a choice. I am not in a rush to an appointment; it is frustrating in traffic, people are not being nice, and I am not moving. I decided to go against the grain and the flow of what everyone was doing. My thought…what if I take a side exit and just pull into a coffee shop and wait it out? Well, that is what I did and it was a great decision. I found an oasis amidst the craziness of everyone trying to rush home.
I got a pot of tea, a real cup and a relaxing atmosphere from where I could see all the cars stuck in traffic. I sat with my lap top on and my headphones on and did some relaxing work…bliss. I had a lovely chat with the barista who was from Melbourne and we talked about her short time in Canada. If you think about it, I could sit in the car and try to make it home or sit in the coffee shop and do relaxing work. I was there for an hour and by the time I got out, it was a 10 minute easy drive home and no back ups. I think if this happens again, this is the best solution…if I am not in a rush. Sure, if I would have stayed in the traffic I would have gotten home earlier; however, I suspect that the difference was about ½ an hour and much more enjoyable and a lot less tension. If you don’t have to rush, look for me in a coffee shop the next time you encounter terrible traffic. Sometimes it is better to break away from the crowd and do something different. Another example of the extraordinary in the ordinary!
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