I have a ticket. It’s not golden, though. It’s orange this month. Every month it changes. It’s my monthly train pass, my ticket to freedom. It just takes me to work and back home, which might not seem like much freedom, but to me it is magical. It allows me to ride the train between two stations an unlimited number of times each month. Since I commute and generally take the train four days a week, it saves money versus buying tickets each day, or by the week. But that’s not why I love it.
My ticket is special because it means I don’t have to drive. I can do almost anything! I can close my eyes and listen to a guided meditation. I can put on my contacts. I can eat breakfast. I can write Morning Pages. I can doodle. I can read a book. I can take pictures of people on the train without them knowing, or write full character sketches based on detailed observations. I can look out over the Hudson River out one window, or at towns going by on the other side. I can pretend I’m going on a long vacation, or a magical adventure. I can watch videos on my Samsung Galaxy Tab. There are so many things I can do on the train, I’m sure in a hundred years I couldn’t think of all of them.
But perhaps what’s more important is what I can not do (not can’t, but things I usually would do that I don’t have to now). I can not drive 40-50 minutes in rush hour traffic. I can not buy gas every week for over $40 for a full tank. I can not get frustrated at other drivers. I can not worry if I’m going to get to work late. I can not pay attention to where I’m going. This is where the true magic comes in. I don’t mind driving sometimes, but the long commute drive is a lot to do day after day. Choosing to take the train frees me from stress, and from worry, and leaves me a much happier person. And being happy means I am more likely to get creative when I get home.
Sunday Scribblings is a blog run by Meg Genge and Laini Taylor that posts weekly writing prompts.