So here I am again in the local Starbucks with my skinny mocha watching folks pas through to get their morning fix. Individuals, couples, families, groups, skateboarders, toney folks, campy folks, bikers, locals, tourists...being located on the main drag in Banff it gathers together a strange menagerie of patrons. If it weren't completely rude it would be fun to take a picture of each person as they come through and make some predictions about their day.
One gentlemen who I had a short conversation with is a goldsmith here in a town...a local...whose wife is working behind the counter. He suggested I get up to the Banff Centre, which is an arts collaborative. Based on their website it looks like a conference center and arts project and event space, but I will venture forth to see what they have for the random traveler to look at and think about. If nothing else, I'll bring the laptop and find a corner to do some writing in.
My goal this morning was to reflect on my mental state from yesterday and determine my next steps. I was truly exhausted yesterday, and the accumulation of miles and uncertainty had come rolling down over me like one of these ubiquitous mountain streams that I have been hiking next to. So, here is my new manifesto, my framework, my plan, as it were...
First of all, it's only a plan to the extent that I continue to embrace it. Although some structure is called for, the freedom to pursue the little shiny things that interest me is essential.
Big picture insight: SLOW DOWN! Without really intending to I have been accelerating rapidly. I think I need to arrange to be in any given destination for at least two nights to ensure that I have some down time integrated into the daily schedule.
REGARDING CAMPING: Seeing beautiful places is a part of the plan, but camping in and of itself was never a goal. I am finding that I'm not all that fond of camping alone. There are parts of it I like, but in the end I'm not all that engaged by that context. It's a way to save some money, and I should treat it that way. Make a reservation when possible, arrive late, sleep, move on the next morning. Campsites are not the place where I am most at home so far.
REGARDING MONEY: Relax. Yes, this is costing something, but not such that I should be anxious about it. There is a plan and I am within the parameters of the plan...its just that cash flow is tight until the various elements of the transition out of the Roseville job and the move settle out in August. Patience is required.
REGARDING BEING CLEAN: I am tired of being dirty, so clean the car and do laundry more often.
Here is the new list of things to attend to in order to make this more pleasant:
- At each destination, spend one night in a hotel and one night camping. If a night is required between destinations, camp or crash in a rest area.
- Make sure to have a morning hike every day.
- Find a way to clean the sleeping bag and pillows. Soon. Or at least take them out of the car and hang them to air out every day.
- Spend more time in places where you can sit comfortably and write or read.
- Slow down. Slow down. Slow down.
- Find lakes to swim in.
- Clean the car. Soon. Perhaps today. ;-)
- Be patient. You'll be home soon enough.
- Arrange lodging reservations in advance. This is a bit of uncertainty that has been problematic.