Monday, February 7, 2011
In some ways I think I am a disappointment. I don’t look the part of the steely adventurer. I am not especially tall, and at about 150 pounds, not physically impressive. I have no striking features, no piercing eyes or hawk-like nose, no Indian braids or mountain man’s beard. I am not sun tanned, and I can’t brag of thru-hiking any of the great trails. I talk too much or not enough. I don’t like coffee or the NRA. I tell bad jokes and fart.
I don’t have any of the stories that people want. There were no showdowns with wild beasts, nor fording of any raging rivers or fighting any boiling fires. I did not scramble up any mountain’s peak and dangle precipitously by a string, or dodge an avalanche. I didn’t even pick a particularly odious parasite off my keester. Nor is it likely that any of those things will happen. Those things are all attempted by the stupid.
There is no great cause that I am walking for and I have no message to spread. I no longer want to teach, not since realizing that teaching assumes that I know better than you. And even sharing I am less likely towards, since I am not sure I have anything worthwhile to say. I am raising neither money nor awareness, besides my own.
I did think that things would become at least a bit more distinct by now, that I would feel more sure of myself and of my desires. That I would have something worth listening to. Instead I find that everything worth hearing seems to be external to myself.
That’s nothing so profound, it’s just how I feel. And really, if I had to say what makes me walk, it’s just a feeling. It feels right. And it is right for right now.
So no, I am not finished. Seattle was never the end. It’s just where I was when it got cold.
Come spring, this is where I’m going.
Mount Assiniboine Provincial Park, British Columbia, via many other places. I'm going to get there and walk all around and over it, and then head south to Glacier. Obviously I did not take this photo, though the next time I put up an image of that mountain, I intend it to be one of my own.