Tuesday, November 23, 2010


Remember those old albums which would have a 40 second track near the end reprising an earlier song? Being here now feels like that, a four month reminder of eight years.

Friday night I went to a dance performance at the university and walking home afterward made me think of the time I’d walked the same route after a Greg Brown concert, singing and enjoying the stars and city lights and dark Lake.

I live on the same block in an identical building. This adds to the strange sense of time reversed. I walk by the apartment where I lived before and see the outside of the windows where first Hijack, then Walden, the dead cats, sat and watched the world. In my new apartment I keep checking the time on the clock on the microwave which isn’t there. When I leave, I look down to say goodbye to Walden and reassure him I’ll be back soon, and when I return I think of saying hello as I reach for my keys.

I haven’t been doing any hiking because I’m trying to rest my feet which I apparently did a lot of damage to with a couple pair of bad shoes intended for normal walkers. I walk very heavily on the outsides of my feet. At this point most steps still hurt. I may try to get out there later this week since the library will be closed for a couple days, and I know deeper snow and colder weather are coming eventually.

I’m wishing I were in Yellowstone—even Mammoth which people told me doesn’t get much snow has more than a couple feet on the ground and more coming. Apparently it's the most people there have seen at once in many years of working there.

My Yellowstone coworker is wrapping up his latest two nation National Park tour and heading back home for Thanksgiving. Earlier I was very impressed by his photos of snowy Jasper; from the latest couple weeks, Zion and Bryce in Utah were especially lovely.

Working on reducing inventory of everything again and doing well at it—this may be my last chance to sell stuff. No idea at this point what I’ll be doing next October when Yellowstone 2011 ends. If I’m returning for the next winter season, I’ll be able to store stuff there; if not, I’m not likely to ship it anywhere again so whatever books are left (down to 90 or so at this point) would likely get donated to the rec hall library. Anyway, heard these appropriate lyrics on an old cassette tape.

Already One—Neil Young

In my new life I’m traveling light

Eyes wide open for the next move

I can’t go wrong til I get right

But I’m not falling back in the same groove


Northland said...

Do you have xc skiing snow over in Duluth yet? At the winterer's gathering there was a dusting of wet snow (enough to cause car wrecks galore) and, I believe there was skiing snow for awhile but then there was rain and so my daughter says there is no skiing - so I guess there won't be much in Duluth. Backcountry bushwhack skiing is something we enjoy around here, and snowshoeing a bit later.
It must be bittersweet for you back there in Duluth. I can totally relate to your feelings about wanting to be in another place rather than where I happen to be. When I was in public school in southern Michigan, I always wished to be in the north woods. When I lived at Anaktuvuk Pass and St Lawrence Island I yearned for the UP and Oregon - anywhere but arctic Alaska in the dark months! When I lived at Eagle I thought about mushing on the hardpack of the tundra, especially in the spring.
It took me years to not yearn for AK in the summertime down here - Alaska with the midnight sun and the sea. Alaska with the open horizons of youth and freedom!
Life goes on and I mostly feel content wherever I am nowadays, or at least I try to be. It must be nice to anticipate spring in Yellowstone now that you know the area and job that you will have. But gray early winter Lake Superior country has its own charm. Hopefully your feet are on the mend and you can get back to trekking on your familiar north woods trails.
Happy Trails and Superior views!

greentangle said...

I think the city sent out word last week that some of the x-country trails were ready to use.

Heard from Yellowstone last week wanting to know if I wanted to come back now. Yes, I do, but can't for several reasons including that I paid all four months rent in advance. Part of the whole will/financial/legal mess which I'm hoping to resolve in the next couple months.

I'm coming to the self-diagnosis that my foot problem is something called plantar fasciitis. So I'm really limiting walking; hope to at least do Park Point before I leave. At least I've seen some sunshine a couple times.