Last night I set an alarm clock for 5:30am, with a safety alarm set for 5:45am. My plan was to take a 7:30am ferry to Fira, which Google maps claimed was a 24-minute drive from my apartment. Additionally, the ferry I found only runs once per day, so my two hour time buffer was planned more for peace of mind than efficiency.
It’s obvious where this is going. I woke up a 6:53am – unpacked. In a dreamy state of conscious I strolled out of bed to the bathroom and splashed my face with cold water. After which it was quite clear to me that if I was going to make my boat, moves would have to be made.
I was a circus act while packing. And because of it every shirt I own is going to need pressing. My bag is a giant stuff sack, and this morning I proved its name true. It took me 8 minutes. That is to shower, pack, scan the apartment twice to make sure I had everything, and hail a cab. Where at that point, my day’s fate was in the hands of a taxicab driver.
7:24am, I’m out of the cab and standing dockside in front of six monstrously sized ships. To my right, a small ticket booth in which sat a wrinkled and gray woman eating her morning pastry. This was the true make it or break it moment – “Miláte Angliká?” I asked. To which she so beautifully scowled at me for interrupting her meal, but soon replied, “Yes, speak English I do.” Three-minutes later I had a ticket in hand and was sprinting across the dock to (of course) the farthest boat from the booth.
7:29am, I’m walking aboard the High-speed 6 ferry to Fira as the colossal ramp squeezes me into the vessel and the sunlight out. I made it. No time to spare, but no time to spare was needed. Though I walked on last, I now was in no different a position than if I had walked on first.
Comical as it may be, whenever I arrive perfectly on time for an appointment, meeting, or anything, it makes me feel like a special agent – especially if I’m using a dial watch! As though I had executed a mission with professional like precision. And while walking up to the main cabin floor, I began to think about how much time I must waste trying to be early to places, and how I didn’t almost miss my boat; I had arrived perfectly on time.
Collectively I must have lost whole days of my life by showing up to airports hours early, and other time sensitive obligations. For whenever I plan to travel, shop, or do anything really, to often do I deem myself a completely unnecessary safety net of time – and for what? I’ve never missed a flight. Airport security has never actually taken that long. And for the time it takes to complete any task, I often waste half that time on the computer.
Imagine the amount of time you could save if you scheduled your day to the minute. If you have four meetings one day, schedule them back-to-back instead of with 15 or 30-minute breaks in between. Then suddenly you’ve added another 1 to 2 hours to your free time instead of wasting it on short breaks. At least in my mind, an extra hour to my day sounds much better than four 15 minutes breaks. And this is why by accidentally sleeping in this morning, I was able to clock in and extra hour and twenty minutes of sleep and have a seamlessly efficient travel itinerary.