Day 7 -- A For Adventure -- 93 days to go

My husband and I embarked on a 100-day challenge on June 1st that will take us a year to complete.

I stumbled across the challenge while reading through my local paper one evening after getting home from my day job. The piece was called Time to get outside and play and encouraged simply getting outdoors, getting fresh air, getting more activity in our techno-driven, sedentary world.

It really attracted me, who has taken on various online challenges in the seven years I've been blogging: reading challenges, the Movie Madness challenge (where I watched 100 films in a year) and of course the annual NaNoWriMo November writing marathon.

However, I didn't think it would attract my agoraphobic husband. Still, I told him about it and asked him if he would like to do the challenge with me.

To my absolute delight, he said yes.

Brad is from Toronto, and when we moved to my home province of Nova Scotia fifteen years ago, he was unnerved by all of the open spaces here. He prefers the concrete jungle of the Big City, yet his agoraphobia was already present when we lived in Toronto. It was harder to pin down, however, because at that time his bipolar disorder was not as well-controlled, and he spent many happy days strolling along downtown if he was in a manic phase.

Ironically, many former Ontario come-from-aways seek out Nova Scotia for the very things that freak Brad out: open beaches, undeveloped forests, lakes aplenty, rocky coastlines. In the fifteen years we've been here, I've invited Brad to come with me when I headed out for a walk along the ocean or in the woods, knowing that nine times out of ten, he'll decline. So most of this province has remained unexplored by my husband, who somehow retains a curious heart within his agoraphobic condition.

In the short time that we've taken up the challenge, we've been to two ocean beaches, a city park featuring a pond and gardens, an outdoor art fair at a winery, and an outdoor multicultural festival showcasing international dancing. All of those would have been on Brad's 'I-think-I'll-skip' list before signing on for the challenge. I think this is the first summer in his adult life that he'll greet the fall with a tan.

We've had a few urban adventure walks, as well -- simply heading out to the car-centric business park to see a movie on public transit turned what seems like an indoor sedentary event into a marathon hiking event. But it was worth it -- Wolfcop! He's a wolf. And a cop.

We chronicle our adventures on our Facebook pages -- I also share mine on Twitter -- and the response from my circle of friends has been so supportive for Brad. I also notice that many people are wondering why they don't do something similar with their own partners in crime.

Although the challenge is meant to be 100 days of adventure in a row, we're taking ours slowly. It's better to build in success. There would be no way that Brad could handle a pace more frequent than twice a week, which is already well past his normal tolerance level. For me, who has chronic pain issues, a twice-a-week adventure is doable without wearing me out.

For anyone who wants to join in on the challenge, you can visit their web site HERE.


Is there someplace nearby that you've always said to yourself, 'We've got to go there sometime'? Why not check it out? We're having a ball doing just that.

Photo by Helen Tansey
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