Happy Birthday John Muir, and thanks…

muir-coinWhat a cool guy John Muir was. Not only did he have a bunch of stuff named for him, including plants, butterflies and animals, he’s even on the California state quarter.  But what’s most impressive to me, is that he was involved in an accident and lost his sight in one eye, when a metal file punctured it. Months later, he recovered sight, but then,quit his job and six months after the Civil War, he WALKED from Louisville, Kentucky, to Cedar Key, Florida. During that time he kept a journal about all the interesting plants and people along the way. And he did it again in 1868, when we walked from San Francisco to Yosemite. That takes a special kind of spirit. It must. To shrug off the everyday, and just get out onto the earth and walk somewhere. Today, people rarely even walk to the store. But then camping is the number one vacation activity in the U.S. . It’s like, there’s a part of us, that we are trying to reconnect to and it’s kind of like when you take that first sip of Coke, you know, “ahhhhh”, when you finally make it to the thick of a pine forest, or overlooking the Smokey Mountains, or just look up, in the pitch black, alongside a campfire. We’ve been programmed to forget, to want stuff plugged in, prepackaged and broadcast. But when you take a moment to appreciate the great outdoors, the smell of dirt, the feel of moss, the stars, unencumbered by flourescent light, then somehow, you feel alive. That part of you awakens. Watch an ant crawl across your finger. Check out a spiderweb. Google Yosemite. It’s out there. Don’t miss it.

“Most people are on the world, not in it. – have no conscious sympathy or relationship to anything about them – undiffused, separate, and rigidly alone like marbles of polished stone, touching but separate.”  John Muir