The morning begins, as many do these days, in chaos. When I feel this scattered, I jump on my bike and ride ten miles or so. This helps me get into my body, into a rhythm, slowing my mind and allowing scattered thoughts to settle into cohesiveness. Lately however, even this is a challenge.
Today I almost got blown off the road by two tractor-trailer trucks passing at high speed on our narrow stretch of highway. Although the shoulder is adequate (why the Ironman Triathalon is held on this side of the island), the turbulence created by that passing causes my heart to flutter and my gut to sink to my feet. Survival mode kicks in, I breathe, focus, continue my trajectory. All is well until I reach tiny Hawi town, where tourists swarm and car doors spring open sans forethought. Meanwhile, passing cars try and navigate two crosswalks and numerous ice cream-licking jaywalkers. I continually practice a Qi Gong exercise designed to ground and protect me, and it does help. But I’ve never done it virtually continuously until today. Next stop, Kapa’au, where a minivan veers toward me with no oncoming traffic threat. My skin prickles. Shake it off, keep on going.
Sometimes I feel like a magnet, whether cyclist or driver, and I understand how trying to avoid something sometimes leads to its opposite. I think of quantum physics’ Law of Attraction, that we move toward where we place our attention. Then at the end of my ride, before heading up The Long Hill toward home, two cars intersect – one turning, the other speeding up – just as I try and make the turn to give myself a bit of oomph up that grade. I can count on three fingers the times this has occurred in the six years we’ve lived in this location.
I consider the old advertisement, Is it me, or is it Memorex? Sometimes I am truly given to wonder. And I know this has an explanation in science, most recently revealed in this experiment where seeds are planted with “love” and “hate” or “you’re ugly” written on their containers. The ugly seeds really do grow into little Gollum-like creatures, while the loved ones flourish. With this in mind, is my own inner turmoil projecting out into the world, attracting all the psychos on the street? Or am I picking up on the general chaos out there and it’s affecting my ability to remain anchored? I never really know, but I suspect it’s a bit of both.