Why go into the wild?
Besides the fact that I am obviously a huge fan of the popular novel (and the movie was pretty cool too), without getting too much into politics, perhaps I am not that much of a capitalist as these times would expect one to be. However, bills need to be paid, mouths need to be fed and there ain’t no rest for the wicked (as the song goes). Hence, one, including myself tries to find various escapes, refuges so to say, in order to free their minds from the big city life and corporate day-to-day brainwashing.
I’ve always been a fan of the mountains. Perhaps that can’t be entirely thanks to my amazing brain but mostly to my upbringing, aka my folks. They’ve been the same as well so ever since I could walk I was dragged here and there into the wild wild greens. It’s fair to say it wasn’t always cool. As a kid it was boring and I found myself reading the whole Jules Verne “series” in a few months during summer (what no internet or TV does to you). As a teenager I preferred the hectic life of the big city and the company of my friends, wasting time in bars seemed like a great idea. Further on I think life just happened and managed to be the architect of my own free time and I had no saying at all. A conference here, a volunteering program there, do this, do that and one day I just woke up thinking ok what the heck would I actually do, according to my dying free will?
I’d say I turned back to the mountains as a prodigal daughter, who once fled for the big excitements offered by the city. Ironically, by the time I turned to the big greens again, it started to be “cool”. It is cool nowadays to say no to the internet, to take a break from Facebook, to say no to all sort of social media, to fuck television and the manipulative news they offer. You get my point. It’s cool to isolate. Each year I took this challenge as well and went without social media for one week (and my God it was harder than I imagined, beside the fact that everyone thought I died). However, lately, I started asking myself why the need to isolate, why the need to pick green instead of grey?
As expected, the circle of my people also consists mostly of mountain going folks. I started asking each one of them (like a psycho) as to why they turned to nature, why not find something else? Fuck knows. Go bungee jumping, learn to play the violin, play football or drink beer with other 30 years old men with bellies in bars. Why not do that? It costs less both financially and in means of physical effort. I got all sort of answers to my question, which made me realize that truly you never can know the people that surround you.
I will reproduce some of them for the sake of the article. One is that it offers excitement just as much as any other adrenaline giving extreme sport. Which makes sense, wince certain difficult trails can set the right level of adrenaline. Someone said that the mountains have always been there, whenever something went astray, the mountains are always there to listen, to soothe. Others see it as a challenge from a health perspective, various people with different problems turn to easier or why not, even more difficult trails for the sake of breathing in the fresh mountain air.
My friends say that mountains are a refuge for me to run away from my daily problems. Perhaps he is right. Perhaps I do find the safe place that I require in the depths of nature. I will always pick sitting under a tree on a mountain top and reading some surreal novel to going out and partying in the city. Perhaps it’s just old age getting to me and transmitting that I need to chill, that the wild days are gone. Getting back on the trails was also the challenge, after the crash I mentioned in the previous article.
Why can’t it be all? I’ve been asked recently why all my travels are in the mountains. I thought it would be necessary to offer at least some sort of an explanation. So here’s your answer, the amalgam of gathered together answers, of past luggage and present impressions that are merely thrown aside during those few hours of ascent. And as a tiny P.S., one can’t cease to mention the view, damn, the view is worth the climb.