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The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Queen's U chapter.

Intentionally getting lost leaves me with one of my favourite feelings I have ever known. I spend so much of my time in a rush that I forget what it feels like to have room to simply be. To be inspired by the preciously ordinary things in the world; to walk without purpose; to let myself make mistakes. No stress or frustration or disappointment. When I am overwhelmed with unoccupied time, everything inside feels a little too stuffy. I feel suffocated by the walls in my bedroom, and my thoughts feel alarmingly loud. There is something so paradoxical about the feeling; the space feels haunted though it seems virtually impossible to leave. There is a gravitational pull to my bed, there is a longing for the comfortable nothingness. As I grow more aware of this destructive cycle, I become more proactive about stopping it in its tracks. I peel my body out of bed, shove my headphones in my ears, and leave before I have time to second-guess myself. With no plan and nowhere to go, I take to the streets.

Here are some of my favourite places to go:

Girl Sitting Road Roadtrip Fun Summer Adventure Original
Charlotte Reader / Her Campus

An aimless walk on a city street will always be satisfying. Sometimes I turn up my music so loud that it feels as though I am floating above my surroundings, untouched by them. Sometimes I turn it down to a quiet lull, hearing it blend with the sounds of the city: cars driving through puddles and the chatter of passersby. I look at the street signs and storefronts. I turn wherever I feel compelled to, without judgment or searching for a ‘why’.

The grocery store. I love to stroll the aisles of the grocery store aimlessly. To carefully look at the produce and get mesmerized by the intricacies of a strawberry. To people watch, seeing what fills the cart of the mother of three from my periphery. Simplicities are interesting if you use your imagination to fill the gaps; to name the little girl tugging on her mother’s skirt; to picture the home they will drive back to.

The bookstore. To be surrounded by stories feels exhilarating. To flick through and have the words “dedicated to my mother” remind you that these tales were crafted by another human. That they spent years finding the perfect words and arranging them in the perfect order to fill its pages. It’s comforting to know that if you read every book in the whole bookstore, you would find a character just like you. You would feel understood and accounted for. You would feel seen.

Thrift shops. Specifically, the home section. The trinkets and knick-knacks and faded china dishes. It feels like going through your grandmother’s old drawers. Or packing up as you move houses for the first time, deciding what is worthy of taking the trip with you.

Parks. If you look around at the park, you will be met with smiling faces. People are happy at the park, and it feels good to be around happy people. I love to swing the way I did as a child; it surprisingly still feels just as freeing.

Residential streets. There is so much to fantasize about on an occupied street that is not your own. To imagine the lives of the people behind the doors and to picture what yours would look if it had been set there. Roaming up and down the streets of a cozy neighbourhood feels nostalgic to me, even when I have no memories of my own there.

Carve out time to walk without purpose. Get lost and then find your way home slowly. It is freeing and playful, and exciting. Remind yourself that beauty is everywhere, and feel the humanity of existence. The journey will always leave me with a clearer mind and a fuller heart.

Maya Gelfand

Queen's U '24

Maya Gelfand is a fourth year film and media student at Queens University.