The High Uintas
Thoughts flash through my head. Distant memories. Then some not so distant. Thunder rolls outside my window. Birds chirp against a still evening. The calm before the storm. Like a former self, my life flashes before my eyes. Family. Friends. Co-workers. My beloved cat. It all seems like some other world. Not the one I am living in now. This one is something out of a dream. My nomadic wanderlust fetish fulfilled. I’ve stepped into my longing and found myself right where I want to be. I’ve heard the saying, “It’s a very dangerous thing to do exactly what you want.” But here we are. Traveling full time. In our truck camper. Or “tramper” as Valerie likes to call it. With only a loose schedule. Fully adjustable. Able to be tweaked. Improvised on a whim.
We are day 4 of a year-long sabbatical. Or mini retirement. Or pilgrimage. Or walkabout. This all started with a simple question posed by a friend sitting in my kitchen in Boulder. I try to think logically about how this worked out. But at this particular moment, I can’t quite piece together all the details. It’s more like at one moment, I had one reality, and now I have another. Just like that. I think back to other past realities. College. High school. Childhood. They too seem like just moments ago. I’m a child playing in a plastic kiddie pool. And now I am here. I’m driving my parent’s Buick to the high school dance. And then I am here. Sure, we can conjure up the details. Piece together a timeline. But that requires brainwork. And I’m not always so sure we should believe what we think. To me, it feels like I simply had an intention. Decided I was serious about it. And boom, here I am. Just like that. In one life I had a full time job and a large house payment and in this life I’m debt free. Free of responsibility. Free of schedules. Free of deadlines. FREE!
And it’s the Fourth Of July. The day we celebrate freedom. And we’re high in the Uintas. With the Wasatch range in the distance. Wild flowers all around. And the sky turning blood orange. Then purple. Then slate gray. All against a canvas of deep blue sky. The air is silent and a sense of peace emerges so thick you could slice it into cake and eat it. I sip my White Russian and reflect on the day. My legs are propped up and stretched out in my chair. They feel “the good ache” from riding miles and miles of trail in Park City. And my belly is full from a delicious meal made with love as the primary ingredient. Tomorrow seems a million years away.
I stare out the window of what seems like a ship on the sea. The sunset seems to hang for hours. Clouds in the distance form sheets of rain that never hit the ground. And the hand of time ticks. I hang tightly onto the needle. Not wanting to miss a millisecond. Because that is where it all happens.
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