In search of coffee, I found Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

Sometimes we get so wrapped up in our little world that we don’t see what’s right in front of us.

Recently, we traveled to Spokane for a graduation weekend. The schedule was tight and with the celebrations and actual graduation ceremony, there was little time for anything else.

On our last morning there, while Elizabeth was finishing packing and cleaning up the Airbnb, I quickly went in search of some coffee in this quaint little town.

It was a cute little town, nestled in northwestern Idaho. But, what we didn’t know was that we were about a mile from a picturesque scenic view in Coeur d’Alene. We had stayed near the Interstate in the b&b and hadn’t gone deep enough into town to notice the views.

Unfortunately, we didn’t have the time to explore further and headed home without taking in all the marvelous scenery.

Isn’t that the truth about life though?

We get so trapped in our daily schedules and routines, all the while searching for our dreams and our big success. And it may just be a mile away. Or around the next corner, or just over the next hill.

Several years ago, I was in Albany, NY, on business. I was training and setting up a new office there, but my company cut that trip short, rescheduling me to go cross country to Portland, Oregon, on about 12 hours notice to take care of some urgent business. As I was heading to the airport in the wee, dark hours the next morning, I passed a sign on the highway: “Baseball Hall of Fame Next Exit”. WHAT?

If you know anything about me, you’ll know I’m a baseball fanatic. To be that close to Cooperstown, New York, and the Baseball Hall of Fame and not get to take the tour was gut-wrenching! Though it was a decade ago, I still see the sign in my mind and feel the queasiness in my stomach for not being able to stop.

If you remember, I was recently getting restless in my job, looking elsewhere for a job that would be more fulfilling and eventually found my great opportunity right under my nose. The grass isn’t always greener on the other side of the fence. You may just need to water it a little!

Or maybe you just need to go a little further down the street. Or turn the next corner. Or turn around and look right behind you.

No matter where you find yourself geographically, mentally, emotionally or spiritually, there’s a good chance you’ll find your beauty, prosperity, success or progress close by. And you may be missing it simply because you didn’t look behind the tree or just down the street, or because you’re looking into the next county or state.

Don’t get so busy looking for your mountain sunset or your quiet lake at dusk that you miss the beauty that’s right under your feet.

Years ago, I remember having friends who lived in Houston who had never been to the Astrodome! Say what? I was hours away from Houston and, at that time, I’d never been. But I didn’t live within virtual walking distance either.

Look for your Astrodome or your picturesque Couer d’Alene. Or maybe your hall of fame is a little hole in the wall restaurant that everyone in the next state over knows about, but you’ve never visited.

It’s not enough to grow where you’re planted, you should bloom where you sprout and blossom where you take root.

Now don’t get me wrong. There are times you need to get out of your Egypt and the path may be cleared to cross your Red Sea, but there’s a lot you haven’t seen right there in your neighborhood.

Your “neighborhood” may be your job, your church, your yard or literally the streets within walking distance of your house (your literal neighborhood), but take a few minutes to check out what’s there.

And don’t get so wrapped up in your own little world that you miss what’s right in front of you.

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