One of my favorite sayings is that you can’t go home again if you never leave. I have done tons of leaving and going home and now I have so many wonderful places to go back to. I also know this kind of gypsy, see the world, experience it all kind of life is not for everyone. Think about how crowded it would be wherever you are if everyone else was in the same place.
Going back, as I just did, is not always easy because we all know not everything stays the same. Change is one of those things we signed up for when we popped onto this planet. Sometimes it’s a bit of a pisser if it erases some of the fond memories we had but really, a memory is a sacred and golden thing.
So driving backwards for several weeks to spend time with my family, take care of a bit of business, and to visit some of the places I once called home, I took along my memories and some half-hearted expectations. Obviously, my secret Utah desert and mountain places could not have been kept a secret for this many decades. Obviously, the Colorado vistas would be filling up. Obviously, the environmental damage to the West would be everywhere I looked. Obviously, my heart would sing and dance anyway and I would make the best of it…which is exactly what I did.
Here’s the thing or several things:
The desert is still glorious and red and hot and stirred my soul.
The special places where I camped and hiked and wrote poetry and discovered so many things about life still held all of that for me.
The endless miles of heat and sand and dry sagebrush remained a glorious mystery of time, weather, and all the ancient peoples who came before.
The vistas still took my breath away and made me feel small and so powerless and yet absolutely joyous.
The smell of the dry, rich earth and sweet air was exactly what I remembered and made me weep as all those memories washed over me and made me feel as if I had just been born.
And I can’t even talk about how spending two weeks with my children, my spouse, and my beautiful daughter-in-law in all those places and watching them embrace and fall in love with the sand, sagebrush, and sunsets made me smile and realize once again what a gift this life continues to be.
I can go home again and and I will but first I have this new place to see and one after that…