Resurfacing. Alive. Dancing.
“All the faces and lives now lost to time but remaining as a reminder, not just that we may one day die, but that we may live now, live fully, and love freely.”
I realize it has been quite some time since I have updated on here. I was laser-focused on my goal race for the year, which just took place this past weekend and will now try to catch up on the events that led into Fat Dog.
This was my first Sky Running event and I must say, I quite enjoyed it. Maybe it was finally being surrounded by clouds and rain. Or the Wasatch-esque climbs and descents. Or that I had next to no goals for the day outside of really taking my time and last nutrition experiments before Fat Dog.
Even though I was not particularly satisfied with having to slow down every time I felt like letting loose, finishing with very little fatigue in my legs and energy to spare was worth it all. It was a great weekend with friends old and new, in an area completely new to me. I’m glad my 2014 plan to explore more of the area where I live is panning out nicely.
The race itself was quite well organized being in its first year. After a few items get ironed out, Trailstoke will be a new classic.
Wild but not Free
“It is only in adventure that some people succeed in knowing themselves.”
I finally got to live my dream. I set up my mini-SUV as an ultrarunning mobile home and made my way off to the mountains. Back in January when I registered for the Fat Dog 120 mile race, I knew that anything could happen on race day but these moments, these days of living wildly would mean more to me than race day itself. As much as I have come to love my community in Vancouver, my heart dances when thoughts of spending time alone running in the mountains for days on end begin to play.
Passion. It is a song heard by few and different for every person. But when you hear this song, you have no choice but to move and be moved. I am blessed and cursed to hear this piece constantly.
I set out, plans in place of which parts of the Fat Dog course held highest preview priority. Equipped with all my gear and the dearest of friends planning on joining me for a couple days, I was excited beyond what I dreamt this moment to be.
Each day held that joy and anticipation you felt as a kid finally released from school or chores and told to go play outside. The deep simplicity was fully satisfying to my soul. The adventure stoked the fire to explore more of the natural beauty in this world. Even getting tracked by a cougar could not dampen my spirits, although exhilarating and scary as hell.
So how does one return to the so-called normal life after finally dancing to the song that has been playing for years? I cannot be the only one left trapped by a desire for wildness. Thoreau has a famous quote “all good things are wild and free.” I do not see how ‘wild and free’ can coexist. To be wild leaves me with no freedom in my ‘other’ life. The mountains are always trying to acquire my attention, gnawing at my thoughts, making the ‘career’ seem as small as a darting sparrow through the trees of the forrest.
I will continue to hold these moments close to my heart in hopes to spread the joy and happiness it gave me to those around me. Or as Howard Thurman put it:
“Don’t ask yourself what the world needs. Ask yourself what makes you come alive and then go do that. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.”
Keep dancing to your song.