The Other Side of Charles Bridge


for lau

When I was 19 I packed up my bags and moved to Prague, Czech Republic. 

Talk about an adventure. 

My weekdays were filled with helping and serving the team I was working with there and my weekends were for exploring. Prague has this amazing metro system which can get you almost anywhere you want to in the city, which for me meant that I could wander to my hearts content (without fear of getting lost) and when I was tired of exploring I would hop on the nearest metro and make my way back to home. 

It never failed that the city would somehow beckon me to its Old Town Square where I would find myself having conversations with local artisans about why they love to paint the Prague architecture on the face of a button or how to carve a marionette out of wood.  I would wander through shops and listen to musicians and my weekly tradition would crescendo with a visit to the famous Charles Bridge.  I would walk about half way through the bridge, reveling in the beauty of the moment and then I would usually head home. It was a beautiful tradition, there was only one problem. 

I never went to the other side of the bridge. 

I know. No big deal, right?

Yet, for some reason it haunts me. What is on the other side of that bridge? I guess I will have to trek all the way back over to Europe to find out. I realized though this unfortunate incident that adventure is never as easy to do as when it's right in front of you.

That one gem of an experience has pushed me to embrace so many amazing opportunities I know I would have otherwise missed out on. From swinging at the end of the world in Ecuador, to forgoing a great nights sleep to stay up to see the sights of Paris, to eating a fried tarantula in Cambodia (spoiler alert- surprise, surprise, tarantula tastes like chicken).  I have learned that when adventure is staring me in the face I will never pass it up. I'm determined to not let fear, exhaustion, jet-lag, or the desire for a nap to trump "carpe-ing" the-heck-out-of-whatever-diem is in front of me. 

So perhaps that is what has brought me here too.  Writing again, blogging again. It's been a few years. I will be honest, writing terrifies me. It feels so permanent and so, I don't know... out there. Perhaps admitting it's scary makes it a little less so. But terrifying or not it's time... 

I know that you have some things like that in your heart too.  You know what I am talking about. Those things that everyone who loves and adores you tells you to do and yet you are terrified to do them.  

Yes, those things. 

It's time to do the scary things. Life is too short to let all the adventures pass you by.  Your days are too amazing to live embracing timidity rather than charging towards living.  It's too risky for you to never risk, and it's too mundane to never give your best to something that really matters to you.  

So, let's make a deal. 

I'll start writing and you will start on that thing that scares you.  I have a feeling that we will both look back and be glad we crossed that bridge when we had the chance.