August 15 2016
I started writing this blog because I was living in Minnesota all winter. I needed something to do and some way to work through the adjustment of journeying to staying still. I always thought that trail would somehow help solve my issues with the culture around me, but in the end it left me with more of a sense of longing. It left me with this idea that there is a better world, there are good people… there is a life in which happiness is the background of thought.
Trail genuinely threw me for another loop. I had to re-adjust after the 2011-2012 banking/housing protests (OCCUPY). I had re-adjust after living in the motor home. And now I am readjusting from trail. To live within these moments, with these fleeting friendships and to remain happy is quite a challenge. Every experience is making me that much stranger, that much more unemployable, unruly, unhappy with the current weather of our culture. We need a change. In the meantime I am going to stay unsettled and adapt with each new experience. I am constantly without a place to live, without possessions, without work, but I am working. I am struggling. I work very hard. I’m not on vacation and this is not easy. To be complacent in regular life, to medicate, to dull and accept this fated world…that would be so much easier for me, but I won’t settle for it. I am my actions, and I don’t want to be that. I fully understand that it takes a lot of work to be satisfied with what is, to be tolerant of what must be, but it is so much harder to actively seek and spread happiness. Tolerance and satisfaction take on new meanings.
I hope I can be part of that change. I want to lend my hands and heart to it. I need something worth working for and money/power just doesn’t inspire me.
Every day I wake up and think about walking, about the forest, about the mountains and the people I have loved so deeply. I worry about them. I wonder how everyone is adjusting. A lot of people have taken to rubbing their accomplishments around like flags. Some are honest and spill it. A lot of people have talked to me about the struggles of returning to “normal” life. A lot of my friends have discussed depression and various other emotional struggles with me. (I firmly believe that depression is caused by environmental interactions and is not a medical condition or illness).
I am writing a book about all of these experiences with the hope that it might help others struggling with these issues. I should have it finished within the year.
I am posting this today because today is hard. Right now is difficult. I have the PCT on my mind, but it seems forever away. Spring can’t come quickly enough. I find that people stuck in these towns, tied down by their sense of security, love the storm of human emotion. They love drama and the high winds of mouths speaking useless words. They are bored.
I love real storms, on distant mountains. Thunder and lightning, rain coming down; this is what makes me feel alive. Human drama is completely irrelevant in the natural world. You don’t matter; what you do matters. And the only thing that can save you in those dire situations of struggle…is love and cooperation.