Some days we must run from the exhaustion that clogs our lungs and the buzz of people not looking up from their screens.
We must run to see the day, to wave hello to the clouds, the sun.
We must flee to where the only sounds are the crickets singing, to devour the silence of the stars while sitting next to a highway that's still hot from the blazing afternoon sun.
We live close to be alone. We drive around in our cars, isolated by our cellphones and forget to touch the grass, forget to touch the humans who exist like jewels beside us with our eyes.
We let TVs fry our brains, emails eat us alive, apps and the notifications fill us with the kind of joy that the mountains or the sea offers up for free.
We spend our money to find joy from rich food, wine, clothes—all the while forgetting that the Creator does not put a price tag on happiness.
Happiness can not be bought.
It is found dropping in on the white curl of a wave, when our left foot steps forward and for but a moment we are in the glory and the might of Mother Earth.
It is in sunburnt cheeks and shoulders that sting slightly from the salt that has scrubbed away the toxins of stress.
It is at the peak of a mountain, after we have hiked for hours past limestone cliffs, stepping over the red dirt that came from the center of our earth. It is when our breath is short and our bodies are tired for we have used them for their worth.
So we must escape to the wild—to the open highway, to the woods, to a lake where the only disturbance is feet breaking water.
We must take ourselves away in an 86’ Toyota Corolla with sleeping bags, a cooler, a petro gas burner and a stack full of CDs for when we tire of the wind roaring in our ears.
We can buy a map—yes, a tangible one drawn by the hands of some human that we may even unknowingly pass on the street one day. One that will not die over time, but reliably be ours to call upon for adventure. A map that will eventually bear circular coffee cup stains and the fingerprints of our children.
Follow it 2000 kms into the heat of the outback, to where “no gas for 300 km” signs show their faces and we kiss our jerry cans and cross our fingers that we make it back out alive.
Let our shoes be the bare soles of our feet, seeking boulders as big as city towers that reach up into the sky in the middle of the desert, greeting us like individuals in all their power and independent might.
Lay beside them without urgency and listen to the songs of our ancestors we forget to hear.
Listen to their gentle hum and wisdom we so seldom stop to hear.
Follow the white lines to the Indian Ocean, wash the stains from the desert into her turquoise and listen with the ears have gifted us with the capacity to hear the greats of the ocean---whales singing into the blue beneath the surface.
Our ears which can hear the heart beating in the chest of our lover—our other.
We can dry off and let go of our importance, our needs, our to-do's and breathe in the gift of having these legs to walk on, these lungs that pump air and give us life--without our direction.
We can make a chai on a petro gas burner on the side of a highway and invite a stranger to sit with us. By forgetting for a moment our individuality, we show up to receive the gift of companionship, of tribe, of community.
Remember that our number one reason in living is to avoid merely existing.
Wander till our feet are sore, our skin is brown, our bodies are tired, and our hearts are stretched.