I've been living out of my car for the past 6,936 miles, logged 104.7 hours in the car with a grand total of 43 days.
I've learned a lot from living alone and being separated from, what now feels, like the outside world. I started running again because for some reason, when I'm moving faster, my thoughts become clearer. My thoughts become poetry, poetry turns into prayers and prayers become thank-you notes. I can hear the river beside me and there is a sort of peace that settles deep down into my roots. So I keep running.
I'm so grateful for everyone who has let me crash on couches, beds, trailers, yards, etc. but I was growing tired of being a guest in someone's home. I had to travel almost seven thousand miles to realize that it's all about balance.
A balance between traveling and finding a good place to come back to.
A balance between being in company and being solo.
A balance between wildness and settledness.
So as I drove away from Groveland and all the wonderful, interesting people I met there, I played this song and threw my arm out the window to feel the wind and pines on my skin.
First stop on my list of places en route to Colorado was the Buttermilks. I took my crash pad out of my car and leaned it up against the side, creating a couch that stared right into the face of the mountains. I sat there for a long, long time until the sky grew darker and the outline of the hills started to blur into the sky. I slept in my car that night, picked up a hitchhiking mouse that decided to live in my dashboard for a day or two, and then woke up at 5 to see the sunrise over the skyline. I took a million photographs.
A brief stop in Flagstaff, AZ and I'm back in Denver. It feels good to set my things down for a little while to use this place as a base, and it's good to see my family. They all look older. Not in a negative way, but in a way that puts a couple more smile lines around the corners of your eyes- those kinds of measurements of growth. I wonder if I look older to them, too; if I've acquired a few creases around my own eyes.
I wonder when I'll find the balance between being around cities and living in small, small towns. It seems like there must be a happy place in between, but until then, I will drift between the two. Denver doesn't necessarily feel right, but it feels okay. I can't quite put my finger on what's missing. I think the exhaustion has something to do with it, so maybe after I sleep for a bit, the inspiration will come again.