//Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore. PS 16:11
She released her yellow lab from the leash as we started down the Appalachian Trail. A familiar stretch of ground, Lily, unburdened, stayed close but walked free. Myself, being the first time on the path was grateful to see a clear path with identifying markers on the trees, not for myself, per se, but because I was thinking of the many thousands of people who take this stretch of land very seriously. From Maine to Georgia, 2,200 miles through woods and over mountains, hiking, tenting, through all manner of weather, finding shelter and food along the way, it seems to be a great source of accomplishment, comfort, and soul settler for some time after, even when done in sections.//
I remember telling my daughter I was on the trail that day for the first time in my life. Even though it was only a short walk with a couple of friends, it felt good to me. Hearing about it all these years but never stepping foot on it, somehow in my psyche had left an emptiness, like I was missing something. Being a New Englander all my life without trace of it, well, just wasn’t right. To my surprise she said I was wrong and mentioned two or three other places I had been. When I researched them I found she was wrong. Even Tuckerman's Ravine that I had scaled, fearfully, is not the trail. It is close to it but veers to a different direction.
Makes me think of the ways I walk. I can think I am on the right path in life and be totally off the mark. On the right path there are no shackles. I know there is freedom to move within its margins. There are identifying markers. There is light, shelter, and nourishment provided along the way. Sure, they may be distractions. It may be dark and lonely at times. I may want to find another way that looks easier.
What about you? Is it time to consider the path you walk? What is the end of the road you’re now on?
I just want to stay on the right path so I reach the right destination.
5 minute writing
// marks beginning and end