Often when we think about adventure, we tend to have the idea that they must be expensive. Time and time again, people will give the excuse ‘but I need to save money,’ or ‘it’s just not in my budget this month.’ But why should this be the case? Sure, if you want to go bungee jumping or paragliding, that might be way more than you want to spend. But, there are plenty of alternative ways to have a fun and thrilling time, without having to spend your life’s savings.
Being a student, I know what it feels like to want to do so many things and not having enough time or money to do them. Even though I am employed here at Urban Adventurer, I definitely know what it feels like to open a bank statement and be shocked by the numbers. Since I often dread tearing open that envelope, I often try to think of alternative (and cheaper) ways that I can have fun.
So what is there to do, if you can’t go to an amusement park, ski, see a movie, or go shopping? Well, the possibilities are endless! No matter the place, season, or time of day, you can always find something to do. Here are my suggestions:
1. Get Creative.
Give your life a little spunk—a little abnormality. Not an artist? Good, I’m not either. You don’t have to be the next Michelangelo to be creative. It can come in a variety of different ways, and prove to be the key ingredient for your next adventure!
This summer I went to visit one of my friends in her hometown. One day with nothing to do, we were forced to get creative. At first we were stumped, and just paced around her house waiting eagerly for the final Stanley Cup game to come on that night. But then we thought, why not take our excitement for the game, outside? So we grabbed our little point-and-shoot digital camera and headed into town. We proceeded to make a video showing our support for our team, consisting of us interviewing others, dancing, jumping, and running all around town; acting a bit absurdly, but having a great time nonetheless. We made friends along the way and got everyone to cheer for our favorite team!
So get out there, grab a friend or two. Make a video, interview people, take silly photos, do whatever! You’re never too old to act like a kid for a day.
2. Go Exploring.
As you’ve read with my ‘Adventure in an hour,’ there are always new places to explore. So go on a hike on your next day off, go for a swim in a nearby lake, or even just go on a long walk around your neighborhood with a friend.
During the school year, my friends and I are always looking for new things to do without spending much time or money. Restless one day, a few of us wandered around campus, and ended up at a nearby beach just in time for sunset. It was unexpected and unplanned, which is my favorite kind of adventure!
3. Take your daily routines somewhere new.
Instead of having dinner at home, make it into a picnic at a nearby park. Instead of taking your lunch break inside a break room, go outside and sit in the sunlight and soak up that Vitamin D. You may think that your daily schedule is unchanging, but there is always room for variation. Perhaps you go grocery shopping every Tuesday after work. Next time take your business elsewhere. Try a new farmers market, or an international foods store—you never know what will inspire you.
4. Do your reading.
No matter how small the town, there is always something going on. Just pick up the local newspaper and turn to the back. You can usually find a list of things going on in your area. Every Thursday in my town, there is a free concert in the local park. It’s a great time to sing, dance, eat, and catch up with friends. An adventure like this can turn into a tradition, which ‘Music in the Park’ has become in my hometown. Other options range from art festivals, to fundraisers, to local markets showcasing small businesses.
5. Learn something new.
What’s something you’ve always wanted to learn? Whether it is to perfect your grandmother’s chicken cordon-bleu, learn Swahili, or master that sewing machine in the back of your closet, the possibilities of things to learn are truly endless. Even if it’s just the simple action of picking up an old book you’ve been meaning to read—exercising the mind is the greatest adventure of them all. Don’t just sit there and play angry birds on your iPhone. Get off your phone, log off Facebook, and go learn something! You’ll not only enhance your perspective on a variety of things, but you’ll feel better about yourself too!
Have you ever heard the saying ‘the greatest things in life are free?’ Well, whoever said that had a point. We don’t really need money to bring excitement into our lives, because adventure lurks around every corner, in everything we do. Money can’t buy happiness, love, or friendship. It can buy you plenty of other things of course, like a new car, a big house, and plenty of shoes—but money can never buy you the thrill of life. That’s priceless.