I never wanted this. This wasn’t born of my desire as though I had willed who I am into existence. It’s as though somewhere along the way the wind picked me up and I could not let go- I am now bound to it, wherever it may please itself and I to go. I have lost my way so that I might stay in sync with The Way that soars through glorious splendor towards a world unknown, a world unseen.
I look back at age 20 thinking that by age 30 I would be happily married with a house, high-paying job and 2.3 children to come home and see every evening. Now I am 30. I am sitting beside an ocean and have been walking the road for 42 days. “Home” is a word filled with deep meaning. I would suggest that “home” is not the dwelling we go to each night nor where we wake to each morning. It is not the place we were born and it is not even the people with whom we are closest. To be really at at home, in the sense which I am speaking, is what Buddhists might call “enlightenment” or Christians might say is received at salvation- being born into the “Kingdom of God.”
I am far away from anything many might call “security.” But after 42 days on the road I feel completely at home everywhere I am. As I gaze down the shoreline I am dreaming of visiting every country man has constructed upon the earth. A seagull just landed and is looking at me. He likely hopes I will throw him/her some food but I’ll manipulate my own perception to believe he/she just wanted to welcome me home, to say (with a British accent, because isn’t that how seagulls speak?): “Hello, friend!”
In the last 42 days I have experienced new levels of joy and pain as with each person I meet is coming from a different place in life shares their own joy and pain. I have had some of the best moments with homeless people living on the streets to the hardcore cyclists riding from Canada to Mexico or beyond. I have been granted entrance to speak words of life and encouragement within minutes of meeting people. I have listened as people tell me things they say “I’ve never told anyone this before. Is it scary?” and I get to simply listen to them without judgment and inquire further into who they are, where they’ve come from, and where they wish to go.
Like I said, I never wanted this life. But it called to me and I listened. With each step I took towards it my heart became alive as though for the first time. The more I let go and let the wind carry me, the greater in force the wind becomes until I fear I will no longer have any fear at all.
There is such a grand and beautiful world out there to see. There are soon to be nearly 9 billion people and I want to meet as many of them as possible while I’m here. I want to walk communities and villages and cities and countrysides filled with people of all colors, creeds and experiences. As Thoreau said “I want to suck the marrow out of life.”
And as I’ve said before, I never wanted this life. This life chose me.