Lost in the mire ov wilderness and folklands, townships, railways and roadways, I have been called a drifter, a tramp, a nomad, a hermit, a warrior, a monk, a hobo. All these names fit for I also follow the way of the Wanderer himself, who has many faces. I have begun to count my years by the cycle in which I started them, shortly after the spring equinox. To which I am slowing walking towards two years roaming the earth, no ‘home’ other than in my heart and where I lay at night.
As does the moon pull on it’s waters and exert a strength in times that make the folk mad or conspire them to act, so it has rendered its verbs on my mind, and I revel in the thinking of my past 26 lunas. Contemplating the first spiral of the year, I have come to understand this year to be a brand of initiation, thee first year encompassed the while to travel extremely long distances without money, to be patient for new prospects out in the world, and find the kin that would come to support the journey in some way. I have made lovers who I though were soul mates, turn out to be enemies, and enemies turn out to be comrades. Staggering the need for comforts and learning to accept a secluded bush with the same grace as a mansion for the night is one of many parables of the journey I have vied to solve, and have come a long way with it. As a monk who plays in the world, he may entertain pleasure and opulence, surround himself with desires yet also take nothing but the clothes on his back and walk, if not only to see what he can learn along the way. It is dangerous and ill to lust after the attachments of modernity, and our fellows of this earth who do themselves favor to try to live without. This came as an epiphany the more I gave away my stuff, the threshold of my happiness lowered, and I was content with less. In the forever journey, temptation will come, an easy and pacifying fill can be taken when the morale slumps, but the ebb that follows is harder to pull from, one must remember that the discipline of self yields the true gains.
“The temptations came to me in the wilderness. I fought them as best I could through all the years of the journeys and always, when I won, I was handsomely rewarded. I carried a stock of memories of magical evenings out alone in the wild, completely satisfied by the simple food I had cooked, listening to the silence and toasting the stars in a glass of tea, and I used these memories as my blindfold against the gross sirens that beckoned with their neon smiles. Success was built on success and sometimes I was able to carry through a victorious campaign for days or weeks on end becoming hardier and happier with each succeeding day. But the war could never truly be won. Sooner or later some warm, generous person on my trail would offer unsolicited, some or even all of the delights I had learned to ignore. Then, when it was time to leave, the struggles would begin all over again. Like a general I was only as good as my last battle” -Ted Simon aka Jupiter
In the summer of ’14, being outlawed from the states came as a chain to the ankle. It’s been half a year to thee day, and it doesn’t feel as such. At times when I’m tramping down the road and find somewhere to settle I begin to pine for the country. I think on it often, and though I am not barred for life, I still must wait a long time to return. Pondering where the magnetism comes from, I realize it as nostalgia. Several of mine kin are situated within the lower states, cascadia, and the west coast. My fondest memories thus far on the journey are from my escapades in New Mexico, Arizona, California, Texas and Vermont. I wonder why there is this pull, and yet it is really quite meaningless, as Europe has just about everything mirrored from the fifty states if you know where to look. Crossing the Atlantic is always a big charge and dramatic change in my life. Usually it means going to the UK where I have taken refuge as of late, working in the glens, mountains and forests, saving money to penetrate the rest of Europa. I think of times before there were ‘borders’ and times when the borders were drawn in invisible lines over mountains and ponds, through deserts and jungles. I met a Hell’s Angel on the road who has just come out of prison, we both chose to board a Greyhound, where we were going was where our fate called us. He told me of the days he would take the sandy mountain pass through the borderlands and ride off to into his boundless freedom. I admired him. Regardless, this unfortunate circumstance of bending my footsteps elsewhere for awhile and this motorheads lesson teaches an important truth of our humanity. We have the natural tendency to strike the road, land waste the miles of endless travel, and we will always find what we seek if we just keep moving.
Cresting the two year mark of my perpetual journey, I contemplate and brood on the importance of the whole escapade. Surely it is a path of sacrifice, and one compelled to some ultimate reason for the cause. What that might be is only found out along the way, my second turning has been one of finding the prospects of the world, following the work around, keeping the old hobo alive, testing my mettle against authority, strife, and physical endurance, and learning the skills of the planet. Real world knowledge garnered not from textbooks and internet sites but derelicts who have spent years on the streets, old world farmers, seasoned tramps, elders of the village, adventure goers who have spent their entire lives in a relation with one special place. I no longer find useful or relevant the implacable need to have a high education or carbon copy genera of qualifications. This year, almost the summa of my wisdom has come from the nature, the voice, the mysterious, the fear, the hardship, and the music of the soul. The two year coming of age will ground a very important and special waymark, as I look back on a certain individual who made his wayfaring to Fairbanks Alaska, the documentary many are familiar with of one young McCandless. He scribed in his journal with an inspired hand reaching his penultimate,
“Two years he walks the Earth. No phone, no pool, no pets, no cigarettes. Ultimate freedom. An extremist. An aesthetic voyager whose home is the road. Escaped from Atlanta. Thou shalt not return, ’cause “the West is the best.” And now after two rambling years comes the final and greatest adventure. The climactic battle to kill the false being within and victoriously conclude the spiritual revolution. Ten days and nights of freight trains and hitchhiking bring him to the great white north. No longer to be poisoned by civilization he flees, and walks alone upon the land to become lost in the wild.”
The lord of the earth, whoever you may call him, Jesus, Son, ATWA, Allah, Prometheus… He knows where I go, and where I seek to lay my head. Just as McCandless had his will to travel, with almost nothing to his avail but his own feet and mind, so I find a certain catharsis in the boundlessness of this adventure.
An English man who rode his motorcycle 63,000 through over 40 countries and 4 years once wrote something like this on the meaning of this life of which I shall reiterate in my own words, that our ultimate purpose as human beings is to bring back new ideas to the cumulative understanding of the world. Garnered from the pot of pure experience. For we are shaped in our own image and are carrier of ideas on this planet. Our life depends on it, and the shape and form of our culture. So many people live confined within unhappy lives, and feel condemned to their routine yet will not summon the will to initiate a change even when it affects their own well being. Conditioned to the means of security, and conservatism, his or her state of mind may be pacified for the time being but he or she suffers a damaging ill to their core of who they are. The true joys of living come from the raw experience of not knowing what will happen next, rising each day with a new sun.
With the new Sun rise I ask myself a plethora of questions, of where I will wander and what I experience and how to prepare for that, always but also too what my intentions are. Will I be alone, or with my significant other. For this third becoming I aspire to address mankind’s indifference to each other by confronting the people whose heart still beat with the soul of their custom. Seeing new places has always been a primary foci of attention for me, though I am ever growing more fond of the knowing that it is the people who make the strongest carves in my memory. I can find beautiful anywhere from pristine coastal escarpments to dank balcony gardens in a metropolis, and it is the people whom I ultimately either become connected to on a loving, jovial, or inspiring level, or thencefore flee from their ways if they come off as hollow and uninteresting. To be culturally sensitive, living amongst peasants, tribes, and earth folk, is fusing to be my current paradigm of endeavor. From this cyclic beginning and ending I wish to spend time with these people, adapting and understand their lifestyle, their struggle, their pride, and ritual. Many places and faces of them have drifted through my consciousness of where I would like to be, but none of them are absolute. I could end up living on the Ganges with Sadhu men smoking ganja to the setting sun, or in the outback of Australia with aborigines, I may be fighting with Mexican peasants for solidarity, or roaming cultic sites of Germanic countries vying for a deeper understand of my ancestral past. All of these prospects are possible and even probable, but this hinges on my outlook of the journey itself. What does it mean now, what does it mean tomorrow? I think I have acquired enough awareness to know when trouble is about, when to find work, where to overwinter and plan ahead for shelter, who to seek out when I need good company, and how to manage my time so I can meet out my time effectively to really sink into spaces, and make them worthwhile of sharing.
All this admitted, there has been a growing sense of rootlessness, and in the nights alone feeling very meek, when my guard is down I brood on the very real problems and lack that I do have. There is not a day when I would not wish to have HER by my side, in my bed at night to lay with and cherish. There is the immanent feeling of sinking into a place for a longer time, the excitement of having somewhere to own, and a circle of cultured friends to be part of. Temptations to collect random curiosities along the way, or even become slightly domesticated for the sense of healing it may or may not incur. Though these feelings and are usually ephemeral, they are core needs in one way or another and at different degrees. I take time to think of what life would be like if there was more, or if I were not alone on the road. I end up pouring my dreamwork into a testament of life that means the world to me. Looking in a mirror or reflecting on old photos, I see how my face has changed, what emotions I am now carrying, how my body has been formed to the burden, and my mind conformed the story. I feel blessed and cursed, tired and aware, lonely and complete, dark and light. Each passing through the gate brings new things to contemplate, and questions to ask or answers to give. I know who I AM, and remember who I WAS, but I confess that I don’t know what I WILL BE, and that is what keeps me going…