Out of Utah and into Idaho further Northwest we travel. The texture again changes and we drive up and over and around and thru the land of the flat top mountains. Mesa’s where the wind blows with such fierceness that huge windmills rise along the landscape. They are providing energy to the sprawling populated areas which are beyond the horizon but even more relevant they create powerful images in my consciousness. “To dream the impossible dream” comes to mind and the realization that the pioneers of our country were indeed on a quest as they traveled over this land. Signs tell that we are following their very path along what was once known as the Oregon Trail. How many sorrows and hardships were born by those that traveled before us. These men and women both brave or in some respects, just delusional as the infamous Man of La Mancha? Seeking the dream. Exploring the unknown to find what they were looking for. What were they seeking?
Indeed, what do any of us search for in our lives? Happiness, love, stability, security? We may be of a different century, but we are the same as they. Are we running to or running from? Who among us are prepared to travel the distance to find what in our hearts and minds we really seek? The early settlers traversed a physical distance seeking the realization of their dreams. Today, most of us rarely travel out of our own backyard. Have we become comatose within our surroundings or are most of us just more successful in finding our comfort zones closer to home? Where do you fit, adventurer or couch potato? Where do I? From one extreme to the other, or just safe and secure somewhere in the middle?
Remember the movie “The Untouchables”? (Sean Connery playing Malone: “And what are you prepared to do now?” ..and Eliott Ness replies: “What would you have me do?” Such wonderful questions I believe. How often do we ask these of our selves?
I’m finding a kindred spirit in these folks that I talk with every day. They have the same worries and joys that those of us in the South have. The wars, economy, jobs, security, worried about their kids, the here, the now and the future. We are all the same. I said to one man, “This area, these mountains, it’s all so beautiful”. He looked at me “I’ve been to North Carolina and want to go back, I love it there”. Are we not ever satisfied? What is this that is pushing us to move along a different path? Is the dissatisfaction that we find in our lives our internal punishment for not utilizing our pioneering genes?
“..and what are you prepared to do now?” How do you make things better? How do you overcome? Do you sit and wait for someone to say ” What would you have me do?” or do you take responsibility and move forward under your own steam? Wait for the assistance or take the leap yourself? Are we like the Snake river, crossing the same path over and over again, or like the windmill generating power for ourselves and those around us? Meanderer or pioneer?
There was a sign on the grocery store door “Please unload firearms before entering”. Yee Haw…I don’t want to unload my guns at this stage of my life. I want to keep them a blazin’ and want to ever appreciate the anticipation of what is around the corner. I know who I want to be. Eyes wide open and ever striving to see things in a different light.