Choice, our luxury and trouble?

Mountains in pink fog after sunset.jpg

When I landed in Denver on my way to Miami, it was freezing. I was in my green tropical sandals, and some light summer clothes wrapped with a shawl. It was only a short weekend trip, so I tried to pack simple - a laptop, a camera and a few lenses, a small bag of clothes, and two pairs of sandals. Ironically, it still took me 2 hours to pack, as I had to go through all the choices. Apparently, this was still a new exercise.

I used to almost always pack with options. Even the simplest trip I took, I ended up all range of stuff. When I packed my entire wardrobe a few weeks ago, I recognized quite a number of new clothes that I haven’t even tried once. Among different colorful cosmetics bags, I dug out, to my own astonishment, ten Lancome mascara - all still working pretty well. As I desperately tried to squeeze all my clothes, scarfs, handbags and shoes in the large wardrobe boxes provided by the mover, it suddenly dawned on me that, life could be more productive and enjoyable if it were simple.

The day I moved, my movers and I were so hungry that we decided to order a large pizza. By the time I finished listening to the pizza choices on the menu, I seriously could have devoured a pizza, and maybe the pizza box as well. The choices were nice, but did not add much value at the moment. I also remember surfing through various career choices earlier this year, complicated by which city I wanted to live in this world, it was not easy decision.

Life has been very generous to me, but sometimes it could be a lot easier if I were not offered that many choices.

During the recent California road trips, I realized the full benefit of being simple. I spent most time enjoying the simple beauty of our mother nature. Everyday, I had lunch picnic either on top of a mountain, on a rock by the waterfall, or on a wooden bench by the ocean. My meals were delicious, even there weren’t all that many fine-dining choices.

I’m still learning to optimize my life with simplicity. Of course, I cannot imagine a life without options, and might inevitably miss the option of having options. At least, at this moment, in Denver airport, I wish I had packed a warm pair of shoes. But in just a few hours, I’ll be in Miami, and everything will be fine.

A new friend recently told me a book written by an Indian philosopher called Osho, about the beauty of doing nothing in life. It sounded ironically funny. I hope I’ll find the book, and maybe become a master of doing nothing one day... :-)