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The Chances Not Taken


The chances you don’t take




The Chances Not Taken

What chances do you regret not taking?

Throughout our lives, we all will regret not taking some chances which were there for the taking. Chances like that dance we didn’t go to in high school. The date we turned down. The job we didn’t take. It goes on and on as we look back at all the things we didn’t do which might have made a difference.

The picture I felt depicted the words. There is a chance inherent in the picture. You can take that chance and see what it on the other side of the curve or go back the way you came. Only you can make that choice. So yes, chances are tied into what risks you are willing to take in life.

Each chance you pass on, or take, will change your life. Some are good. Some are bad, but think about it…would your rather plod along, never taking the chance to do or see something different? Or would you rather go round that curve and see what is on the other side? I will tell you, around that curve is a scene you seldom get to see other than in books.

Chances and how they may change your life

All chances hold the risk of changing your life. If you go around that curve, things may never be the same again. If you don’t go around it, you will always wonder what was on the other side. Now you have a choice. A chance, if not taken, you will regret.

My regret is is not staying single and traveling as I wanted when I was young. It was a chance I missed when I decided to marry, then had children. I regret not taking a chance on my writing when I was younger, but I needed an income which wasn’t likely to happen with writing. I wanted to ride a motorcycle, but it was a chance I didn’t want to take until my children were out on their own.

Second chances

I did end up doing all of the above things. Before I retired, I did travel to Europe, the Caribbean, and most of the 49 continental states. I did become a writer. Riding a motorcycle happened when I turned 50. In fact, that was my 50th birthday present to me…a 1998 Harley-Davidson Ultra Classic which was all chromed out.

What many people don’t understand about chances is you may get a second chance at what you turned down or ignored the first time. The picture above was taken on a dirt road leading out of Cade’s Cove in the Smokey Mountains. (Hint: Do NOT take the road labeled to Townsend from Cade’s Cove unless you like living dangerously.)

What you don’t see

What you don’t see is the drop off on the left side of the road which goes down the side of the mountain or the switchbacks which were partially washed out. You don’t see that the road is only one lane going only one direction. In this picture you also don’t see the visa around that curve which made me stop and look at the beauty until a truck came up behind me.

What you do see is the beautiful fall trees along a rustic road. It draws you into wanting to take a leisurely walk along the lane to enjoy the lovely weather. If you look carefully, you can see the road winding back to the left in the picture.

Was it worth the time to take this road? You bet. Even when the back wheel of my Harley Trike was at the edge of the drop-off, the scenery was worth every heart stopping switchback. Even when I had to ride the twisty Tail of the Dragon at 4:30 with dark coming in just over an hour, it was worth every minute.

If given a second chance….take it

After riding a two wheeler for 15 years, after I was told I’d never be able to ride one, I ended up having to get a trike. (Yes, it’s a Harley.) Those naysayers were wrong. I did have to go to a trike, but I was okay with that since it meant I didn’t have to worry about being unable to get a big bike off the ground in places where no one was around.

Getting a trike ended up being this great choice, giving me the chance to see most of the US on roads I’d not have taken a two wheeled bike. (Unmaintained dirt roads are not conducive to regular motorcycles.)  It was my second chance to live a dream I’d had since I first read about Alaska, Glacier National Park, Yellowstone and the Pacific Ocean.

Chances are slippery little things

Each chance which comes along, only lasts for a limited amount of time. Even if you don’t make a choice, it can slip away from you in time.  So what is my advice? Take a chance. Enjoy life. See what is around that curve. Most of the time, you can turn around and go back if what you find on the other side isn’t what you expected. Don’t regret the chances not taken.

Take a chance. Live a dream. Live your life.

B. A. Mealer

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