I was a bit nervous to go out on an adventure by myself this morning but the weather was great and I knew I'd have regrets if I stayed tucked away at home. I realized part-way through the hike, I was a bit like Bilbo before his adventure in The Hobbit: "People considered [Bilbo's family, the Baggins] very respectable...because they never had any adventures or did anything unexpected: you could tell what a Baggins would say on any question without the bother of asking him."
So, I reluctantly climbed into the car and drove to a recommended trailhead. I've never hiked by myself and I don't know the area nor local wildlife, thus my hesitation. Honestly, I was imagining some type of wolfman or oversized moose behind every large tree for the first mile or so.
On my mini hiking adventure I was reminded of a time when I was suddenly "stuck" in beautiful Cusco, Peru by myself: with elevated heart rate and heightened senses, I began timidly exploring the ancient city and eventually warmed up to discovering local treasures--sometimes off the beaten path. Today, stretching past my comfort zone, I felt a cautious yet bold independence I don't remember experiencing since visiting Cusco. It was liberating--the best Saturday I've had in a while.