Teachings

Other pieces of insight and wisdom found that don’t fit in a Poem nor Photo.

Lassen, Camping

Facts, figures and feelings about my previous week’s adventure.

This was the third time up into Lassen, California of some variety. And we love it so much.

Most of my wilderness experience is due to my amazing partner-girlfriend, EP. Like with most of life, it’s hard to do a lot outdoors on your own and even tough with strangers and friends. Like share a tent? Or a long, week into a cell-free area you don’t know? Sure, one can, and often do take on these risks, but when you’re attached to someone around the clock for all your basic needs, it’s really wonderful to be in love with and know them. Hence, my limited outdoor exposure until 2018.

I hadn’t known, until our explorings, the differences between much outside space at all. A city park, state park, national park; whatever; it was always just outside to me. Now, thanks to her and my own curiosity and awareness, I recognize there’s those differences and a ton more. Such as refuges, wildness areas, recreation areas, National Forrest and BLM land. More importantly, they all have different rules, pros, cons on what you can do.

Additionally to these present day differences, it brings up the whys; the hows; the whens. How did these areas get ‘saved’ or ‘preserved’ why are they this way; have they always been?

Those answers are massive and I’m not going to attempt answer them here and now, rather, keep to my experience within the wonder.

My experience with being outside has had three consistent affects:

1) presence gratitude clarity on my own life
2) curiosity of the place itself
3) appreciation of plants animals and weather

There is. Too much to write about camping. Like these tiny harmless flies that cling to my wine cup as I attempt write this. And a few even managed to sneak in. Bastards. But as it nears 6p, their high time passes and the whispering pines take over. Time. Thank you. Stands nearly still. Days full of tasks, what normally takes five minutes turns into thirty. Turns into staring upwards thinking pinecones are birds then a fine one shows itself. Bursts of yellow and orange feathers fly past. Hair is almost on its end given showers have been left behind, replaced with lakes, rivers, fridged face washes; whatever. Sunscreen. Frisbee. Fun thing like Stand Up Board, giving you and the woman you love tickets for super fun. Thank you gods. Thank you mom. Thank you dad and thank you science for getting me here. Pandemics be damned, unfairness be damned, get outside as much as you can.

A change of space

Today is June 21, 2020; it’s been a remarkable year. Here is now Mill Valley, no longer am I a San Franciscan. There’s much to say about it. Almost more than I’m able to summarize write, think or share. This land allows breath in ways a city can’t. Nature is just so critical and as I lean into 40, with a partner I adore; this lesson has become paramount, a driving force of my and our existence. The presence it brings for me, for us, essential.

REPOST: Wonderful words of Whitman

The trick is, I find, to tone your wants and tastes low down enough, and make much of negatives, and of mere daylight and the skies.

[…]

After you have exhausted what there is in business, politics, conviviality, love, and so on — have found that none of these finally satisfy, or permanently wear — what remains? Nature remains; to bring out from their torpid recesses, the affinities of a man or woman with the open air, the trees, fields, the changes of seasons — the sun by day and the stars of heaven by night.

Walt Whitman via Brain Pickings

As we face the music

Of our inequities, our pains, our problems; I so hope the answer is possible. Can this capitalistic system exist equally? And then I think of the robust differences and yes of course it can. It’s the only way forward.