We recently discovered the term Microadventures from Alastair Humphreys, who explains all about it in his youtube channel, and we thought it was interesting enough to implement it this year and see how doable it is. Microadventures consist of making daily and realistic arrangements to allow a constant contact with nature (being “constant” and “realistic” keywords for us). For example, say that you want to go camping or hiking: you’ll probably wait until you have a holiday break, so you have enough time to make the travel, and recover from the effort. You’ll perhaps want to make it a group thing, so you invite several friends and arrange a date that works for everyone, you have to fix transportation, deal with costs and find all the garments you haven’t used in ages; pray for the weather to be fine, expect some last minute cancelations and off you go to enjoy a couple of days out in the nature. You can picture yourself as part of a Salomon or Patagonia commercial, with the right music as its soundtrack and all. Ah, (sigh) to be out there!
Now, consider that you don’t have to wait for a break or until you can arrange things properly, but that you can use any night to camp, swim, bike, hike or anything. That you can implement these activities in a closer setting. The point of Microadventures is to turn our lifestyle, as sedentary as it gets due to the lack of time and energy to cover a great distance when mountain calls, into a continuous interaction with nature. The lifestyle we long for can be at hand if we let it into our week planning.
On our last Christmas break, we went to Zicatela, Oax to learn how to surf (which one of us kind of did) and enjoy the beach (which we both did!). There is where we realized that having to decide between nature vacations or being with our family couldn’t be the only option, we just needed to change the way did and conceived adventure. We meet locals whose yard were the waves and had been raised on a surfboard. We wanted that kind of daily interaction. Since we don’t have an ocean to go to every morning before work, we had to find options in our surroundings. How hard could it be? I mean, we live in a tropical rainforest. First, we needed to defeat certain limiting ideas: the danger of going only the two of us on our bikes and be easy prey to raptors, kidnappers, assailants,… the non-existing biking culture in the state, how awful people drive here, our own inexperience, and many other dangers. Since fear has always paralyzed our moves somehow, we wanted to make the experiment. The prize was motivating enough: if everything went well we could enjoy the beautiful landscapes, get together as a couple, and enjoy the certainty that we are living according to our desires and principles.
We invite you to make this experiment as well and make the most of your setting, enjoy your time and whatever you have at hand. Go after what your heart desires. There is probably a way of reaching it faster and easier than how you idealize it. Don’t let the idea of a specific location, season or people exclude you from living the way you want.
And if you ever happen to be Villahermosa, and want to go biking somewhere near. Let us know!
Liz & Armando