I was nursing one of the most ungodly hangovers I’ve ever had in my life, on a bus full of relative strangers, on our way to Chamonix, France. The night before in Amsterdam had been a complete shit show. I wanted to sleep but I felt too sick.
A group of us gathered together in the back of the bus to play a game of Who Am I. The way the game works is that everyone writes the name of someone famous on a post-it note and sticks it to someone else’s forehead. The person playing can’t see the name on the post-it. They ask the group yes or no questions to try and figure out who they are. It was super fun and it took my mind off the fact my body felt like it was shutting down from all the abuse the night prior.
After about an hour of playing I couldn’t handle it anymore. My hangover had gotten the best of me. I had to get some rest. I fell asleep. When I woke up we had arrived at our hotel in Chamonix.
I got off the bus, grabbed my bags and entered the hotel. I checked in with the hotel clerk and made my way to the elevator. I was still a little out of it from my nap. But I started to notice people were staring at me as I walked by. I didn’t pay too much attention to it. The only thing I could think about was getting to my room and laying down.
As I got to the elevator in the lobby I saw my reflection in the steel door. I now knew why I was getting funny looks from other hotel guests. Thick, veiny, glorious dicks shooting jizz had been drawn all over my forehead, cheeks and chin in permanent marker.
I turned and looked at my bus-mates as they broke into laughter. I wanted to be mad but I couldn’t. I was in hysterics, laughing at the massive dicks all over my face. These assholes managed to draw all over me while I was passed out on the bus without me waking up.
Getting the dicks off my face was a huge pain in the ass. Since they used permanent marker it became a huge ordeal. By the time I was done scrubbing my face with soap and rubbing alcohol I had pretty much forgotten about my hangover.
The part that really got me about this whole situation was the hotel clerk. It was as if he was used to seeing people with dicks on their face come into the hotel. He didn’t bat and eye or even smirk as he checked me in. Nor did he bother to help me out and mention what was all over my face. Which I feel is kind of fucked up. He just went about his day like business as usual.
“Why are you going to Crystal Cove its full of lesbians and old people?”
“You should go to Newport it’s spring break, the beach will be packed with college girls.”
As I read those texts from my friend I realized that I forgot to pack a fucking beach towel. I was minutes away from Crystal Cove Beach and debated turning around and going home. In the past I would have let something that trivial stop me from enjoying my day. But I decided to say fuck it and go to the beach towel-less.
I parked in the parking lot on the opposite side of the street. From there its a long descent down a walking path and through a tunnel under Pacific Coast Highway to get to the beach entrance. The only thought I had in my head was “this is a giant pain in the ass to get to a beach.” After 10 minutes of walking I reached my destination and it was beautiful.
I went out on the the rocks in the ocean and checked out the little creatures living on them. Then I sat down in the sand, put my earpods in my phone and listened to music while I watched the waves break on the rocks.
After a few minutes I turned the music off and began reading the eBook on my phone. My whole body was coated with sand, but that didn’t bother me. As I read I thought about how children end up covered in sand at the beach. Part of their fun is getting sand all over themselves. But as an adult it seems like such a nuisance.
I moved and sat on a rock at the shoreline. The water barely reached my feet as the waves rolled in. I sat there reading and enjoying the sun shining down on me for the next two hours. When I got too hot or my mind started to wander I jumped in the cold water to shock my body. It revitalized me and got me back into what I was reading. I developed a sense of mindfulness about how amazing I felt and how passionate I was about my life and what I was reading.
I didn’t ruminate over the fact that the day prior I chose not to listen to my gut instinct and sell off some stock; which cost me 5k in profit. I didn’t worry about my business woes or my relationship issues. I was just grateful for my life at that moment. I was being present and experiencing real contentment and happiness.
It sounds ridiculous, but I had this preconceived notion that if I did not have a towel I wouldn’t be able to enjoy the beach. I realized it’s these types of ridiculous rules I create for myself that keep me from happiness all to often. Sometimes the old truths we hold about life need to be thrown out and rewritten. Changing my thought process and taking a different course of action from my normal inclination to turn around and go home produced a new set of positive results – Happiness and Gratitude.