When I walk outside, I sometimes fantasize about what I would do if I did not have my present connections my family, friends, and work. I’d leave the house with my pack on my back and walk west for a long time.
I’d veer up from Maine to take a northerly route, where I’d head for Montana, where I’d visit for a while with my oldest son Lincoln and his wife Stephanie in Livingston.
After that, I’d walk to San Francisco and hang out with my other son, Arlo and his partner Alanna. I’d probably take a plane flight home.
I am hoping to be done working in four years. I’m whittling down my obligations, footprint, and needs so that I can live off Social Security and my Maine state retirement. I want to rent out my camp on Hobbs Pond in the summer and the apartment in my house for additional income.
In the meantime I tell myself, “I gotta be ready for the call !”
I feel like I am enlisted in some sort of backpacker’s version of the National Guard reserve, ever-present for the call to arms.
Why, that would be the universe offering me another “adventure door” to walk through. It is possible that it could be a walking, biking, snowshoeing, or maybe even expedition motorcycling adventure.
I was called up from reserve status this week.
I got an offer for a month’s walk this summer with one of my hiking pals from the Pacific Crest and Continental Divide Trails. At first I turned it down, but now it looks possible. I am pretty worked up.
In the meantime, I’d be putting in my hour or so hiking or biking while I decide what to do. With my new practice of walking in the dark at night under the moon or starlight, I am keeping that small glow of hope alive.
It’s no coincidence that today’s Bangor Daily News had the following reprint of this New York Times article —>>>”Many retirees enjoy the physical outdoor challenges of hiking, mountain climbing and bicycling and do it on the cheap.” Please check it out. It’s an alternative to “Retiring on the Couch”