“We are always getting ready to live, but never living.” -Emerson
Now is the time, the time is now! Ready or not here life comes…and there it goes! To be truly alive is the most precious feeling I have experienced. This feeling ebbs and flows, I am not full throttle all the time by any means; however, I have finally learned that there is no time like the present to go for something that I want. So, when an opportunity presented itself for me to go see my brother up in Washington, I went for it! My bags were already packed and waiting because, as a hobo, they have become my proper dresser/closet. I did some laundry and washed away the last of my Colorado dirt, then I met up with my big sister and we hit the road. We stopped at a gaggle of different places along the way…we slurped down cappuccinos…we caught a movie…and I opted to use my new bivy sack in the spots that we camped.
I should tell you–my bivy is no ordinary bivy, it was a generous gift from a wild mountain man who tracks lions and climbs technical 14er routes on his downtime. He is a grand story teller with a compelling voice and a face made for the big screen. When I met him near the base of La Plata, he smoked cigarettes and drank beer as he spewed intriguing tales about his life. I told him how I had been sleeping under a tarp on my climbs and he kindly offered to give me one of his bivys. Since he gave it to me, I have used it in three different states and caught some of the best shut-eye of my life…right under the splendid sparkling stars. Thank you Mountain Man!
After a few days of leisurely driving, sight seeing, hiking, and camping my sister and I arrived in Everett, WA. My brother met us at his apartment after he got off of work, he honked as he pulled up in his “neusd” jeep (used but new to him). He looked happy and tanned from the sun. He appeared strong and fit from the demands of his iron working lifestyle. The three of us hung out for a little bit and then got dinner at a restaurant along the water. We talked about the stuff of life and consciousness. We traded recommendations for podcasts and told each other stories that filled our bellies with laughter as we munched on our warm fresh meals. My brother showed us a few spots in town where he enjoyed going and we watched the sun slowly set over the rippling water.
When we returned to my brother’s apartment I sang and played guitar for both him and my sister. I played decent, but I couldn’t shake the feeling that I was holding back for a reason I couldn’t quite put my finger on. Maybe because I know they have a certain image of me that I can’t quite let go of trying to uphold? I think each of us are trying to shed our layers and show each other who we really are, but the going is slow…at least it’s going though. There are things we have never told each other, there are things we have hidden, there are feelings that we are ashamed of having, there are fears that we are afraid to admit that we have, there are mistakes that we have made and tried to bury with the pebbles of time. We are all of the same blood and the same home, but each of us is so different from the other. Our paths are remarkably unique and sometimes we are unable to understand one another. But a connection takes time and effort, sometimes it takes a miracle. I believe in miraculous events, I believe that there are no accidents, I believe in a greater plan, I believe that our lives all took the paths they did for a very specific purpose and every step was necessary. Our steps took us away from each other so that we could take this journey back to one another now.
Anyway, enough of my blabbering! My brother got tired and had to hit the hay, and eventually my sister followed. Now it is just me, sitting here soaking in the past few days. Some days are eloquent and free flowing in my mind, others fiddle with my brain like the pesky marmots who tried to break into my car near Mt. Sherman. Today my brain’s wires feel like they’ve been chewed on by mountain vermin. At least my brain told me to stop being such a pansy and it told me to go out into the world and live. Be alive! It told me to forget about getting ready and just go! I hear you, oh captain! my captain!…as you whisper, “Carrrrrrpe Dieeeemmmmm.” I know life is finite, I know time flies, I know there are moments I cannot get back. I know I have to grab each day and hold it lovingly in my arms. My eyes are full of hope and excitement; what will tomorrow bring?