Why do I backpack?

Perhaps it’s the rhythm, the gentle pounding of footsteps down the trail. Music that can’t be repeated, or captured. The soft brushing of my shoulders through the leaves, over the rocks, through the wind. Overheard by none, the steps do not echo, they do not leave a trace that can easily be followed by man or the restrictions the tittle brings with it. The rhythm is only ever heard by the one.

Perhaps it’s the running rivers, crashing and pushing on, plowing over obstacles without prejudice. The only goal, to keep going, to find what lies around that next bend. Carrying on, graceful yet growing more powerful until the body it strains to hold together has been absorbed, or vaporized by the abrasive world around it.

It could be the solitude. The chance to escape the typical, repetitive nature of modern societal living. The sensation of something new, invigorating, something that can’t be designed, programmed, leased, sold, or imagined. Something without instructions. Something without a clear purpose, instead left for interpretation.

It could the uncertainty. The inability to predict what’s next, or what could happen. Knowing no matter how much you slave over the maps, the forecast, the compass, predictability is a fallacy. Nature is growing uneasy, growing restless, and this is the only fact you can truly know. Secretly, perhaps, hoping to be in the midst of the chaos when it arrives just to see if you can make it through, again. Although your judgement does what it can to avoid it, perhaps, a glint in the corner of your eye ignores those dark clouds.

Perhaps, it’s all just a metaphor.

Under any circumstance, I can’t get enough.

 

 

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