It’s a cool night. A slight breeze creeps through the darkness, thin clouds hide the stars; finally it is quiet. It sounds cliché but it is the perfect end to a perfect day.
There are two ways to see a day as perfect and, naturally, two ways to see its end. You can wake up and think that something must happen to make your day perfect, or you can wake up and already see your day as perfect just because, well, it is.
The same goes with the end you can go to sleep dreading that you have to wake up tomorrow just to have another unsuccessful day. You could also go to sleep excited, because tomorrow you get to wake up and live one more perfect day.
The choice is yours; tomorrow is coming no matter how you chose to look at it.
“I am losing precious days. I am degenerating into a machine for making money. I am learning nothing in this trivial world of men. I must break away and get out into the mountains to learn the news.”
Oregon weather has uncountable benefits; two of which are beautiful flowers and gorgeous days for mountain biking. Today was one of those days: white puffy clouds, light breeze, mid 50′s. Needless to say the bikes got thrown in the back of the truck and we headed off to the trail head.
Twenty-five minutes later we are pulling the bikes out, lacing up shoes, and buckling down helmets. I was putting the front tire back on the bike when I caught my finger between the disc brake and the fork. After exchanging a few choice words with my stupidity and dancing around like a drunken Irishmen, I discovered my thumb nail had been split in half and I was bleeding like a stuck pig stuck twice. I, of course, had removed the first aid kit from the truck after returning from Yosemite. After leaving me with a wad of napkins, Lissa drove the truck to the ranger station to find some sort of first aid equipment.
You can never fully appreciate how magnificent the sounds of the forest are until you are standing in it alone. The way the wind moves through the towering pine trees, the song birds as they sing harmoniously with the wind. Then when the master conductor signals for a rest, there is nothing.
My attitude has not really changed; I am a tad frustrated at myself, but wounds heal. I am wandering around the forest, alone. The recent rains have brought numerous small wild flowers; brilliant violets and yellows pepper the mossy undergrowth. In the middle of nowhere special was a remarkable flower. It was many times larger than all the others; its single white flower, surrounded by three broad leaves, drooped down towards the ground. Its colors were so sharp, its pedals so clean. Its beauty made my day, something a few miles on a mountain bike was supposed to do.
Lissa returned, no first aid materials. The bleeding had stopped so it was not a big worry. Going home as decided to be the wisest choice. I had to know what that flower was, that marvelous white flower.
A Wild Trillium.
The trip is over, but am I home?
Returning to the Sierras answered my minds taunting questions and replenished my spirit. I have returned with pictures and the inspiration for countless writings; however, a broken hard drive is impeding in their publication. I plan to have writings and photographs posted by next week. I thank you all for your patience.
I am over joyed. There are birds singing their uniquely beautiful songs, as they have been since the early hours of the morning. I feel well rested and remarkably excited. I had forgotten this feeling of sunshine and a cool morning breeze that accompanies the return of spring. This is one reason why Oregon is my true home: unity with nature. It is something that I only use to feel when in some protected piece of wilderness hundreds of miles from my overcrowded Southern California home. Now, when I open my window in the morning, I hear the birds singing, hawks screeching, roosters calling, frogs croaking, wind blowing. As I lay in my bed I have to remind myself that I am not in a sleeping bag or a tent but in my room, at home; not a bad thing to have to do. The sounds of the morning are what inspire me to live in such a way that when I wake up each morning there is nothing I regret. To me, living here is like a perpetual backpacking trip, inspiration constantly trickles through my head, revitalizing my mundane thoughts. The mountain cathedrals of Yosemite, how I long to dwell in you again.
There is that moment when your mind crosses over from chaos to a place of remarkable tranquility; a moment where your mind defies entropy and places the shattered pieces of your life back in a remarkable order. A timeless moment where you are at peace with yourself and the world around you. I write a lot about the Sierra Nevada’s, I think a lot about the Sierra Nevada’s; this is because ever since I was little, the place where that moment occurs is always somewhere in the High Sierra. One place in the Sierra’s I hold especially close is Yosemite National Park. There is an aura of great peace that surrounds Yosemite. This peace floods my soul whenever I enter, revitalizing my spirit.
I am again preparing to return to Yosemite. What I learned through many trips is that packing is not the only preparation that I must do, there is a huge mental aspect to my preparation. All too often I leave home searching for specific things or I spend time asking too many questions; this is wrong. When I go there searching I tend to overlook what I am seeing and I lack the ability to renew myself and to find what it is that I need. The same goes when I spend time asking questions, I have no time to search. I have learned that I need to go with an open mind and I need to surrender my thoughts. The forests and the mountains have been there longer than I and they know what it is that I need. When I go in with this mindset I always come home fulfilled and I always find what it is I needed.
I encourage you to do the same; rather than searching, just get out and see what you find.
“With every walk in nature, one finds more the he seeks”