Monday, May 21, 2012

To Imagination

To Imagination
: Emily Bronte

When weary with the long day's care,
And earthly change from pain to pain,
And lost and ready to despair,
Thy kind voice calls me back again:
Oh, my true friend! I am not lone,
While thou canst speak with such a tone!

So hopeless is the world without;
The world within I doubly prize;
Thy world, where guile, and hate, and doubt,
And cold suspicion never rise;
Where thou, and I, and Liberty,
Have undisputed sovereignty.

What matters it, that, all around,
Danger, and guilt, and darkness lie,
If but within our bosom's bound
We hold a bright, untroubled sky,
Warm with ten thousand mingled rays
Of suns that know no winter days?

Reason, indeed, may oft complain
For Nature's sad reality,
And tell the suffering heart, how vain
Its cherished dreams must always be;
And Truth may rudely trample down
The flowers of Fancy, newly-blown:

But, thou art ever there, to bring
The hovering vision back, and breathe
New glories o'er the blighted spring,
And call a lovelier Life from Death,
And whisper, with a voice divine,
Of real worlds, as bright as thine. 

I trust not to thy phantom bliss,
Yet, still, in evening's quiet hour,
With never-failing thankfulness,
I welcome thee, Benignant Power;
Sure solacer of human cares,
And sweeter hope, when hope despairs!

Friday, May 4, 2012

Ode to Big Red/Senior Salsa/Big Fuego

Such a sucker.

I walked in to REI over a year ago with the sole intention of "just going to get fitted for a pack for when I can afford one and really need it."
REI is such a trap with its amazing return policy and spirit of adventure that permeates the boredom of every day life in the city. Pictures of accomplished bucket list activities everywhere, survivor tools and gadgets, and gear that looks so cool you find yourself making a mental note to quit school and become a river rafting guide or professional spelunker to attain them. Oh the web of tantalizing possibilities! This is where the spider of poverty is waiting to consume us.
It's no surprise then that I came out with a gloriously colored pack that very day for "just getting fitted". After spending hours with various straps and packs and measurements and trudging up and down the stairs... well, I just couldn't say no. The pack seemed to purchase my freedom and carry all my little future "some day" plans and turned itself into a ticket to make them possible (which it did). Scott had cut me a sweet deal, and I hugged Big Red (and my newly obtained poverty) out the store in the car and all the way home.
Best idiotic purchase I ever made. But because of that day I haven't gone back for myself. I'm afraid I'll walk out with a canoe.

For all the little road trips I used him for I FINALLY got some backpacking out of him with the perfect company. Two of my sisters and I headed to Clear Creek for a little get away with Leslie's granted notion of wearing dresses. Surprisingly comfortable. The Scotsmen are onto something with kilts.

I may find some qualms about this pack in the future, but for now, I am totally in love.
Here's to you, Big Red, and your many names.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012


Meet my man, Earl. 
I know it's not common knowledge to the public but allow me to make it so. One December afternoon I put his required existence down on my Christmas wish list and thanks to my mother's good humor I found him peeking out of my stocking Christmas morn with the most romantic sign. He stands sentinel on my shelf alongside The Lord of the Rings, with his hip 1970's attire (thanks to mom). He's apparently pretty funny aaaaand he's rich. Heck if I see any of that money though since I'm pretty much broke. I also haven't made it to India and three jobs is a far cry from "never have to work." Boy my annoyance was growing over my disappointment. But then I found him in some old family photos and was tickled pink over how good of a sport he really is.

This was his first day in the family. It was a bit rough for him since my nephew openly rejected his existance as a legitimate uncle despite his own father's assurance and that of my own. That's a lot of pressure for such a little guy.
"Liam, meet your Uncle Earl!"
"...This is a joke right?"
"Why would I joke about this."

 But it's all good now and though it may have taken a while the added years have made him so much a part of the family that you can't even tell he once didn't fit in.

He's so good about looking at the camera. Sets an example for all the rest of us. 

Keep it up, Earl!!