We're out of sync; followers of this blog, those I've recently spoken to, and me. Experiences gone and forgotten, some shared, some not. Perhaps I can save some from the graveyard of memories. A placeholder must serve in place of some more direct memorial of experience, however. Truly most off my time in the Sierra is left unblogged and unjournaled, but I think this is okay. This is my public declaration of my intent to journal my time here. Many highlights may remain offline, but I hope this declaration keeps me true to my intent to record these happy memories at least for myself, if no others.
Ok folks, I'm off to Yosemite area, 900 miles out of 2650 done. I know I owe you a "how cool is that!" post or "woah mile 700, gateway to the Sierra" type post, etc etc. But this dude is tired and spent his free energy finding a way to share all his photos, so look at my last two post's links to hold you over for a while, could be a bit before i'm back with a full length post!
The following link contains my photos and videos from Mile 700 - Mile 900 (Kennedy Meadows to Mammoth Lakes)
These are the pretty ones, folks.
The following link contains my photos and videos from: San Diego with my Dad Mile 0 - Mile 700 (Campo to Kennedy Meadows)
Dozens of mosquitos lay in wait on my tent's bug netting. Unsettling thinking of what wretchedness just a small hole could allow into my tent. Especially given that I've already killed over 20 large black ants tonight that have found there way between my ground cloth and tent floor, beasts that I worry could be the very instruments for creating such holes. Still they march one by one to their doom over the bodies of their comrades. My 30 ounce silpoly sanctuary is under attack by monsters that know not the malcontent they cause.
Are monsters those who understand their harm and continue on, or those who lack the empathy to understand they cause harm?
The mosquitos have dogged us the past two days, hardly allowing breaks in the day as we do Desert mileage on Sierra terrain. It has been tough, a true slog. Certainly the hardest physical thing for me to deal with on trail now is the insects. Readers may recall my worst night on trail was largely prompted strange bugs invading my insects. They are vile, provoking visceral reactions knowing any given one can carry serious diseases along with mundane ailments like itching. Thru hiking isn't all glorious views, it's often grounded in the reality of bugs, pain, wet shoes, but boy, some things are just harder to deal with than others.
Check out this sweet fuzzy photo - is it a mosquito or... A man floating above the treeline ??? CALL THE X-FILES PEOPLE!
I wish I could take back all the times I made fun of anyone for something they liked. A store is playing Live Like You Were Dying or whatever and I'm just thinking if someone likes it, its meaningful to them...what's the point of trying to show it's bad? What do you really get out if that? I hope off trail I can remember to just empathize with why they like it, even if the medium causing the positive feelings may be dumb.
I came across a group of hikers the other night that I've seen before and like hanging with so I joined them for the evening. Most were on the Drugggs that evening and one got the group to create an "energy sharing circle" where everyone holds hands hand and collectively focuses on "sending good vibes" to each person before doing the same for the next person. While this garbage was happening, for garbage it was, I was able to enjoy myself thoroughly - the people around me were happy, and that makes me happy, why would I try to take that away or risk tarnishing their high (pun intended)? So I hope I always remember to do no harm to other's enjoyment and have the discipline to keep my opinions to myself when they risk doing so.
My mom once told me as I grow older, I seem to return to things from the past. It was right after I got my blue Subaru with a light interior, which made it look a bit like the Bluebird from high school.
Maybe that's why I'm listening to an old trucker song from high school, Richard shindell's next best western, and iron and wine's such great heights on repeat tonight. These songs are from a time when I thought I had the world figured out, so long removed that nostalgia has washed away much of the dirt from them leaving only shiny memories of high school glory days. Nostalgia makes memories that fall within in its domain cleaner than they may have, strictly speaking, actually been. That's no reason to not be grateful. Who wouldn't want better memories? You absolutely can go out and make better memories, but if the brain is going to make old memories better, just enjoy the free revisions.
From Shindell's song "Willin'", of the four citites mentioned, I now have slept in 2, having been to Tucson and now Tehacipi. I think I'd like to be sure to hit the other two, just for the sake of it. In some sense the past holds templates for our future. Isn't that what a goal is? Some goals simmer for decades longer than other. Goals are just addressing gaps from your current state and your desired states. Goals and motivations are children of this gap. The templates are often vague mental lists of things not yet fulfilled.
Meditation spaces occasionally present themselves on trail. Unfortunately it still takes discipline to ensure I utilize them, rather than worrying about grabbing an extra mile or so. Part of my pilgrimage will be over when I no longer need to force myself to utilize such spaces, when it becomes unnatural to >not< stop for such opportunities. We all miss so much beauty and opportunities to calm our minds in daily life. The world will not miss you for the twenty minutes you take for yourself to intentionally clear your mental weather