This week, I'm thankful for the things that don't work out as planned.
For much of my young life, I obsessed over little details, trying to make sure everything happened exactly according to plan. Before a trip, I'd develop a packing list, then pack a day or two in advance, and double-check my suitcase at least twice before departing.
This expended a ton of useless energy and was more effective at making me anxious than it was at making sure I didn't forget a toothbrush.
Over the years, I've grown into more of a fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants type. I still usually pack the night before a trip (not as I'm running out the door to catch a flight), but gone are the lists and compulsive double-checking of luggage. Because, as I've learned, nothing catastrophic happens if I have to pick up a toothbrush at my destination.
In my former state, there is no way I'd have shown up late for Sunday's race. I'd have printed every page from the website to bring with me and read (and re-read) in the car, rather than enjoying the scenery on the drive.
I'd have spent an hour in the hotel's business center double-checking starting line information, weather, and the exact location of aid stations along the course, rather than wandering the streets of the Marigny neighborhood and finding a new jazz club.
Yes, if I had done those things, I'd have noticed that while the guidebook listed an 8am start, the website said 7. I'd have checked in with other runners to confirm the 7am start.
Then I wouldn't have a story to tell.
Because those days where everything goes exactly as planned...
They're sort of boring.