Monday, August 04, 2008

Working in Nature

My feet still hurt a week later and I still walk with the hiker hobble. I'm still strong. It's strange to be strong and weak at the same time.

I went for a bike ride on my recumbent trike yesterday. It seemed difficult at first, then I felt pretty strong, then my knees started to hurt and I got a ride home. Riding my regular bike feels better and I enjoy the mobility that riding a bicycle gives me compared to the slow pace of walking.

My plan for re-entry has been to spend some time volunteering and taking some classes.

The Sunday paper has the volunteer opportunity page so I picked up a copy yesterday. I found a nice opportunity to work in the La Huerta Historic Garden at the Mission. I hope that it works out. The coordinator is the former City College department chair of the horticulture department. My hope is to learn from him and possibly find other opportunities through him beyond this one.

I spent 3 months walking without any kind of distractions to bother me. I had a lot of time to think. I could not think my way through what to do after the hike. But I feel it may be appropriate that if I no longer live in Nature perhaps working in Nature is the right thing to do.

I sense that Tony does not agree with this. I realize it is a risk to give up on work that pays well for work that pays nothing but sacrificing my life for money doesn't seem right anymore. I only have a limited time on Earth and I want to spend it on Earth, not battling corporate inanities inside a dark room with air conditioning.

One thing I understood out on the trail was that the wealth people seek in cities is an illusion. It's also unsustainable. It's not necessary to have so much. Happiness comes with having less, with working less and enjoying life more. The question is, can I actually live an authentic life with less money? It's possible in Santa Barbara to have not enough to live on. It's not just possible but probable. I don't want to get there, but I don't want to sell my life away either.

I guess I just have to take a step and hope for the best. And contacting the volunteer coordinator was the first step I took.


  1. Wonderful, honest blog....I very much enjoy your thoughts and they echo some of mine. 1500 miles by yourself on the PCT is a helluva of an achievement. And your re entry insights have been helpful to me in seeing from the outside how this frenic american society goes about its daily business. Thanks and keep typing........and many of us will keep reading.

  2. Thank you Bruce. I hope I can continue to find something to say.

  3. Yes, it is honest. And I am hoping you will turn it into a book. You have been somewhere. Tom Lyon