Research has shown over and over again that experiences have the most positive impact on our well-being….Experiences “become an ingrained part of our identity”, says Cornell psychologist Thomas Gilovich…First, experiences connect us to the people with whom we share them. Second, experiences make us into the people we are. And last, even bad experiences morph into positives over time.

Charles Wheelan- We Came. We Saw, We Left

Here we are, talking about experiences again…

You know I love an experience. You know I love getting out of the house and seeing what is out there. I am energized when I go out and do something, and I get the same feeling whether I go to an organized event, or if I just take a walk. Eavesdropping and people watching are two of my favorite hobbies- I love to watch body language, how people interact, what they wear, how they conduct themselves. I get so much fodder for writing just walking down the block.

Let’s think about this morning:

I went to the gym. It was raining and I was trying to run across the street as I opened my umbrella. Of course the light was changing and I was running slower than my already snails pace and a car honked (because there is still a lot of traffic even though it’s 6:40 am) and I sort of laughed at myself and then I saw a young woman outside the NYU dorm waiting for the NYU shuttle and she was cursing the professor who she was apparently going to talk to, and when she saw that I heard she started giggling and said I’m not crazy just annoyed I’m out here in the rain. And I passed people at the bus stop and the street vendors setting up their displays and the guy who stands on the corner forlornly, and the people who sleep in the doorway of the post office. And I go to the gym and sit in a spin class that’s taught remotely and we are supposed to team ride and I saw a gym friend I hadn’t seen in awhile and our “team” did well against the “teams” at the other two gyms because there’s this whole competitive spinning thing going on, and we were excited to hold our own because normally our gym has less participants, and when I left the gym I saw some guy screaming at some other guy and it didn’t look like a great situation…

This was just my day from 6:40 to 7:50…look at all the things I have to think about and use in my writing…Think about all the memories that might stem just from this little part of my morning…the smell of the city when it rains, the color of a cloudy city, the feel of the raindrops on my head…

So…what are your experiences from yesterday? What did you hear, see, smell, touch and taste? What did you think? What did you learn?

Discuss

53 thoughts on “What an Experience

  1. Okay, I’m very envious of your NYC life…but for me, right now this second, you’re phrase, “I’m not crazy…” triggered this song I’ll share with you here. Kindof to show you how my experiences of this day are unfolding (the music not necessarily the craziness!)

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Racoons, Beagles and a lingering skunk smell.
    Inter-family arguments about back to school, dirty dishes and hair bleach.
    Madhouse grocery stores, masked and unmasked people and giant trucks parking too close to my car so I can’t open the door to get in.
    Construction, jaywalkers and detours.
    All of this pales compared to the adventures I really want to write about, mostly based on overthinking and overanalyzing.
    For instance: elusive sparks, weird men who stalk women on social media, Etsy shops, ghosting, intension setting and mindset, all of which I have written about extensively but not published (yet). 😛

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Fortunately, I am in my rural northern NM cabin and the highlight of the day is taking my dogs out in the morning. They take care of their business, and I enjoy the beauty and the solitude, the smell of pines, and the stillness of a morning just beginning. The morning you described seems so full of anger; I hope those people can get through that to have a better day.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. And we were camped in the San Juan ponderosa forests of southern Colorado. Smelled a nice rain, walked the dog, rode our mountain bikes – chatted with the few other bikers we saw. Gobs of blooming sunspots and asters everywhere. A delicious evening breeze.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I had the most amazing experience yesterday. My husband and I scheduled a private tour of Rancho Del Cielo — the Western White House in the 1980s. It was a 45-minute drive from Santa Barbara, up a rugged, narrow, windy road to a mountaintop. We had a tour of Ron and Nancy’s old Spanish-style home two-bedroom home filled with their original furniture, books, artwork etc. Then we had a boxed lunch lakeside, followed by an SUV tour of their ranch. I visualized Margaret Thatcher and Queen Elizabeth making the trip up the hill to visit the austere buildings. I marveled that Ronald Reagan built the fencing, the lake and loved doing the physical work that needed to be done.

    Liked by 3 people

  5. I love reading about your experiences. You are always engaging. I too enjoy observing others. People are interesting and often quite fascinating. I miss my mid morning walks.

    My experiences from yesterday sadly, were not especially interesting. I was invited to a celebration of life for a neighbor who passed away. I wanted to pay my respects to his wife who had sent out the invitation via email. The invitation stated to share a favorite memory of her late husband.
    I responded to her saying I would love to attend but because I was on new cancer medication I may not be well enough to join her, and in case I was unable to be there in person I shared a sweet memory of her husband that I thought she’d enjoy hearing.

    I tried really hard to go. I showered holding on to recent metal bars I had installed in my shower. (I fell in the shower after a chemo treatment and realized that I better get some of those safety bars). I mean, if I’m fighting to beat cancer and want to continue living, I can’t have a slip and fall from side affects.. And BTW, The bars really do work in the shower. (Chemo, makes me dizzy). I highly recommend them for the elderly or anyone going through treatment of any kind.)
    Another plus to installing them was the handy man who put them in. He was surprised when he saw me. He asked why I was putting them in since I looked way too young to need them. He was most likely just being nice to-get a good tip, but still, it was kind of fun to hear a compliment. These days, going through all the craziness of cancer, owing my hair, having it grow back gray, my world changing so drastically, sometimes a compliment, even if it’s BS is still a boost. Yeah, I’m shallow, I know).

    So…yesterday I was frustrated. The world spun around me in a dizzy haze. And I certainly couldn’t drive let alone walk in a straight line to attend a gathering. I wanted very much to go. I attempted to put on makeup (and laughed out loud at how uneven my eye liner was). So there I was, freshly showered, washed hair, makeup, and I actually thought I looked pretty good. But, being able to walk to the elevator or to my car was not an option. I was way too dizzy. So, I felt guilty that I didn’t get to pay my respects in person.

    Today, I’m just as dizzy and having difficulty focusing. But with any luck I’ll be able to hold onto the building walls, make it to the elevator and check my mail and take out my garbage later in the day. If I’m lucky I’ll run into a few neighbors. If not, I’ll sit down on the bench out front of my building and do some people watching. Then I can imagine a story for each senior citizen who passes by. I’ll wave to the mail person and if I’m not too dizzy I’ll take a little walk in the Florida sunshine. Fingers crossed. If not then I’ll I’ll sit in my recliner at home and elevate my head. Then I’ll turn on MHZ on Prime and listen to the soothing sound of a French mystery that’s got English subtitles. And if I can’t do that I’ll listen to some classic rock music and imagine dancing in the moonlight. ❤️✌️🎸

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I like your positive attitude during what sounds like a very challenging time. I especially like you have a Plan A, B, C,… so that you will do something with your day instead of focusing on feeling sorry for yourself. I think a lot of us could take a page from your book!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank you LG. Yes! I always had a plan B in the past. But now I have plan C and sometimes D. I learned that it doesn’t do me any good to be negative. You can’t be angry about health situations. It’s nobody’s fault when people get sick. So why blame the universe.

        I truly believe that attitude helps people live longer. So, I may get disappointed if plan A or B doesn’t work, but as long as I am prepared and can go down the list of my plans. Then I can still feel productive and feel a sense of accomplishment. As long as my brain still functions then I feel worthwhile and that my life is valuable.

        Liked by 2 people

  6. I love people watching and have been fortunate enough to live in some places where the folks who pass by march to the beat of their own drummers.

    I’m glad you asked about yesterday. It was the first time I got up early and went for a walk in this brand new town, so my senses were on high alert. I saw the brightest display of stars I’ve seen in a long time, and the Starlink satellite passing by overhead; smelled the fresh morning dew; heard ducks squawking on the river; saw the sun cresting the eastern horizon, painting the sky pink, orange, and red. It was all quite spectacular.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Yesterday was full. Highlight was seeing my 4 yr old granddaughter stop @ the job-site at noon with her mom.. She was dressed up in a princess dress, had a pearl necklaces on and bare feet.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I too love watching people and catching snatches of conversation. When I used to travel by Metro, it used to give me enough fodder for writing. Now I am driven to and fro office. And as in all moving vehicles, I fall off to sleep to my driver’s extreme irritation which he hides very well with an understanding and patient look.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. A work conversation brought up by women that I jumped into Pee Wee Herman getting caught wanking in a porn theater to going to a porn theater to how inaccessible porn was back in the day to was porn available at blockbuster ? To a job as a jizzmopper To barbie dolls to the gay leather billy doll to the care bears grumpy bear tee shirt to when my wife was 12 asking her Lutheran Pastor dad in public very loud “When I was born, was that after you & Mom fucked ?”

    Liked by 1 person

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