“Those who contemplate the beauty of the Earth find reserves of strength that will endure as long as life lasts.”
~ Rachel Carson ~
Nonchalant, the lizard made its way towards us, not too close and not too far, engaging in a staring contest, a game of hide and seek from the near by bushes. A herd of cows went by manned by a couple riding cowboys working hard in unison with their dogs while Spirit on a long leash moaning wanting to join them. A European motorcyclist rode by waving while onto his next destination with a big grin on his face. Glad someone had given him the directions of this magical space to experience. Will probably be one of the highlights of his Journey. The weather is perfection and the wind is howling, a reminder from Mother Nature as who is still the Grand Master of this land. We are only borrowing it for a short time, a time as long as we are allowed to be here.
We made it!
Never having a goal in past times I gave myself one this time around. To be here, to arrive. The Journey has been interrupted for too long. Mentally, physically and all in between I almost forgot what it is being on the road. On the road our way. Those little details one has to pay attention to. Even though only sitting here for just a few hours I have already reconnected. The space is refilling my by now almost emptied love and I might add "need" for the Life we live. My vision can’t get enough of the sights of those monuments facing me which have braved Mother Time and stand tall defying the eternal gravity they are with no rest subjected to. I am once again in amazement of our surroundings. There are no thoughts of the future, there is only the now so strong moving in and taking over the hardships of a not so distant past filled with unaccomplished desires and the wondering, that big question mark, if this present reality would ever again emerge.
These past months have been shallow, and hollow as much the steps taken were much needed. I had not realized truly until today it would be as such. The pain has been disruptive cutting me off from this invisible and deep connection. The inability to thread through the path taken these past years even brought on a shadow of depression, one so unexpected. I didn’t want the aspect of not yet able to ride stop us and make us spend a summer at The Oasis. I feel on a daily basis so fortunate to regain the path with a camper. A camper I must say with all the comforts of home! The aspect also of one vehicle and nothing left behind at camp when wandering is also a peace of mind due to the increasing thefts on BLM and National Forests lands. Things sure have changed these past 10 years. Sadly enough not for the best.
At least I did find out.
Sunset was of a glorious one. A gift toward our first night here. Just sat in my chair with Spirit next to me facing it while still trying to mentally put one foot in front of the other. Did I miss such a day? That is an understatement. Dinner was also glorious if I may say so myself. A nice tenderloin steak wrapped with paper thin prosciutto, topped with blue cheese and a mixture of roasted peppers and onions. Nice plain basmati rice on the side. Next evening were grilled lamb chops with a reduced cherry preserve, garlic, ginger and old aged balsamic vinegar I have been carrying with me since ten years ago for special occasions. Simple pleasures of Life, of the palate. Life in a camper is rough! [not!]. It is now darkness, silence, serenity as the nearest camper is a few miles away. I am guessing. I listen to Spirit breathing breaking the total silence. I look at him and the images from that day when I rescued him replay followed by the thought of how many years we have been together just about 24/7. Time has marched on and so did we.
Who said he could not be done?
The days goes by as my chair supports me at an increasing rate of hours. I am just staring ahead while I keep thinking I need to do something but truly I don’t. The background wind noise has not stopped. It is only broken by the few flies already territorial in anticipation of the heat of the summer. They dive right and left but do not yet rest. I sometimes faintly hear one of the commercial jets going by leaving a trail almost from one horizon to the other. More cows are being moved. There is life here no doubt. All is not still.
It never quite is.
We moved today after our morning "can I call it?" hike. A quarter mile and on to a half a mile. Eventually a couple miles. I am in the worse shape ever and also need to lose some weight. Almost two months of inactivity will do it. Surgery sure comes at a high cost! Yet this too shall pass. The weather has turned almost violent and I find myself playing it safer and safer. I am just not as daring as I use to be. Can it be the accumulation of the years passing by? Being wiser? Regardless it feels good to be as such. We moved to the Gooseneck where we will stay until Monday when the prediction of good weather might again be reality. No sense getting stuck in the mud. The paved road here is not too far in case of a downpour and the sights are just as breathtaking especially when I get lucky and find a fire pit and chair awaiting.
My favorite and only channel.
I am finding cellular reception just about anywhere. I almost wish it was not the case as I do have a SAT phone and a SPOT [GPS tracker with also 911 signal available]. Yet, I enjoy sharing and keep posting photos on Instagram [ARAWITHSPIRIT] as we go along! Sometimes also on Facebook [Ara Gureghian and The Oasis of my Soul] as I enjoy sharing. Who knows, someone might just decide to hit the road for the weekend, week or as a few have written to me, for good! Some have sold their home, their possessions and embraced the freedom of the road.
That is the other side of the coin. The shiny one.
The coin I am talking about is Life. As much as I recently enjoyed the company of my Friends in Colorado City, in Springville [Utah], as much as I found myself feeling like a kid in a toy store when food shopping for ingredients I could never find in Big Bend, enjoying every bite of Sushi one evening, I could not truly think while my mind had too much static from the Urban brouhaha. I always wonder how can they "live" as such and yet, I myself lived that Life. There is not much of a choice when one needs to pay their dues and save up for the later years unless working from the road as a few I know do and that aspect in itself is so limited. Life on the road is not only of a physical Freedom but also of a mental one.
Are we ever free? I like to think so but there seem to always be a hang up. Big or small we have to do the best we can as whatever the case "that too shall pass" even if the next obstacle regardless of its size always awaits around a certain corner. It is colder today, the skies are of a medium gray, the sun is trying to peek and give our solar system a work out but it is not happening. The weather forecast is much worse between here and Colorado where we want to go and so we will wait. We will warm up soon especially while on our daily hike [walk!]. Beginnings are always hard. We want the first time to be our hundredth time! Patience. One stone at the time as everything else which has been build from the ground up. It has been a few days and I slightly feel the change. Very slightly.
Until next time… get out there and stay well.
Ara and Spirit