With apologies to the writers of the television show “Mission Impossible,” I’ve taken the line used near the beginning of every episode for my column title.
The show ran from the mid-60s to the early 70s and featured spies with more special skills than any group of humans should possess. Whatever their assignment, a voice left them with “Your mission, should you choose to accept it…” revealing their mission before declaring that if they failed there would be no acknowledgment of their existence.
As we get used to fall temperatures and shorter days, it seems like a good time for us to be given a mission or two. Don’t worry, I’m not suggesting anyone overthrow a foreign government or defuse a nuclear warhead. I’m more about you getting out and about before winter sets in and take advantage of what’s out there close to home.
Here are a few suggestions:
• Northeast Iowa is smack dab in the middle of some great fall foliage. Get in the car and get out and see it. Take some country back roads. You might be lucky enough to see some wildlife as well as the colors of the leaves on the trees. If you happen to find an interesting looking bar or restaurant you are not familiar with, stop in and give it a try. Don’t worry about getting lost. You’ll find your way home. You may not have the special abilities like the folks on “Mission Impossible,” but you have GPS on your phone. Use it.
• It’s also fall festival time at area churches. Grab your neighbors, jump in the car and enjoy some delicious food.
• Put on that sweater and take an early morning walk. The cool snap of the air will wake you up, but the sweater will keep you comfortable. Fall is a great time for outdoor exercise.
• Find a way to pay it forward to someone else. I’m guessing many readers have thought about paying for a stranger’s meal or cup of coffee. Maybe this is the week you should do it. Do you have someone in your town who needs some help with fall yard work? Give them a hand.
• If you have young kids or grandkids, find something to do outside with them. Maybe a walk through a county or state park, or a visit to a pumpkin patch.
• If it happens to be a rainy fall day, perhaps there is a store or business you have always been meaning to check out but never have. Assume their roof doesn’t leak and venture on in. Who knows what you might stumble across? Maybe you’ll find the perfect sweater or jacket to wear on those morning walks.
Regardless of where you live, everything suggested above can be done less than an hour from where you live. And your mission, should you choose to accept it?