Friday, December 31, 2010

Rio Grande to Friendship Camp

Armadillo peeks out in the warm weather

17.7 miles

It just turned midnight, and the wind picked up around my campfire, swirling the smoke up around and into my eyes. It’s an audible wind, the kind I didn’t like to hear whistling through my rigging, slapping the halyards against the mast. The weather’s changing. Thunderstorms were forecast for the night, and the temperature is high, more than 40 degrees.

Praise God for Alabama, where I can be out at midnight on New Year’s Eve in only a fleece. All day I hiked in just my shirt, only the second time on the trip. I can’t think of any place I’d rather be than here. New Year’s is a time to be outside, to feel the air on my skin. I have a couple of resolutions.

1. Make a big choice about my future, and not be afraid of how anyone else will perceive it. I resolve to make my choices this year based on my own ambition and calling, and not on anyone else’s perceptions of niceness. The only way to live is boldly. This year I will live bold.

2. To pay attention to the Holy Spirit. My church is doing a book study group on a book entitled Natural Spirituality, and that combined with my recent reading of Cameron and Jung has made me a lot more comfortable with this person of the Trinity, the part of God that so many ex-Baptists shrink a little at talking about. I believe the Spirit of God lives inside of me. This year I will listen to that quiet voice.

3. Lastly, to do some trail maintenance. Karen, a newly promoted forest ranger, gave us a ride both ways from town in Heflin, and we had a good talk about the rigors of managing a trail. I can come out, at least one day this year, and clear blowdowns, paint blazes. The trail has given me so much. The least I can do is begin to pay back that debt.

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