As I sit here watching a pot of hiker box Mac and Cheese cook atop our Summit Inn mini fridge, I'm reminded of how beautiful this trail life is. It's not about money. It's not about pride. It's about the simple act of lifting your leg one more time. Each time you take a step you are that much closer to the most important and seemingly insignificant goal of your life. You’re that much closer to Canada.
Why we undertook this task is a secret held to each our own. Trail side conversations allow pieces of the story free. Once a bond is formed with a fellow traveler, more of the story seeps out. We find that there is no consensus. We often step onto this path for contrasting reasons. Each reason harbors as much value as the next. Its ironic how one would argue your reasoning for coming out and attempting such a thing when we know that there are countless reasons to be out here.
I guess what i'm finding is that it comes down to the heart. The heart gets us here. The heart keeps us hear. Whether we like it or not we find ourselves fed up with daily toil - the current standard. The lack of "living" in daily life wears a heart thin. How many times have you wished there was more to this story we call life?
Maybe...maybe the thing the heart craves is connection. Connection to our surroundings - Connection to our neighbor - Connection to oneself.
So when I get asked why people from all around the world come to live in the dirt, I can confidently say because this life offers that connection. When else can you be so close to one another? Race, religion, and occupation are null the moment you step onto these footpaths. We no longer focus on comparing each other; instead, we congratulate each other on another day, another step. That's all we really have isn't it? Another day – one more step.
The fleeting nature of the trail is arguably the crowning gem. Every place you see will likely never be seen again. Every person you meet may never again share space with you. It's really a beautiful concept. Like children, we evolve back to a sponge like state. You don't have time to judge or consider. We just soak in everything. Now is all there is. Take it as it is.
So as I stir this box of Mac and Cheese, I remember that some of the best things in life can't be bought, but they can be remembered... they can be shared.