The ride starts like this: Something Happens.  I call that something the Trigger.  You could call it the catalyst or the inciting event or whatever – it’s whatever the something is that begins the Ride. 
            The Trigger doesn’t have to be a big thing, just a thing that resonates for my particular brain.  Like my mom calling and asking if I want to have lunch, or trying on sweatpants and realizing they are tighter than they used to be, or finding a leak in the roof. 
            It could be finding out they’re building a new condo complex next door or that my son still holds his pencil weird or that my friend is moving to Hood River.  The Trigger could also be something purportedly “good” – Getting a work opportunity, getting evidence my son is a genius, getting a compliment.  It’s endless.
            Immediately after the trigger I hop the bullet train to Crazytown, a place where elevated thoughts, feelings, and actions run the show and seem normal, inevitable, even essential.  It’s a place where the heart beats faster, the mind swirls more intensely, and responses come automatically.  Breathing is shallower, heart beats faster, imagined consequences are heavier, and survival feels under constant threat. 

            I have spent years in Crazytown.  At the time I found it invigorating, even pleasurable.  Not anymore.  Now I want to stay more in Reality and not go to Crazytown so frequently, so intensely, or for such long periods of time.  I’ve made a few pit stops in the town of Sanity, met people who told me about the village of Presence, and even taken classes about the land of Consciousness.  I believe these places exist and that’s where I plan to hang out more of the time.