Typical Sunday night insomnia. It’s not anxiety-driven this time, which is a relief… I’m simply thinking too much to go to sleep. Usually I take some melatonin, then lie in bed until it kicks in. Sometimes, nights like these will see me applying for jobs, or schools, or once, an international work visa (Australia, as you may recall). Tonight, though, I’m passing the time with some internet-related tasks from my to-do list, which’ll reduce the number of things I have to think about when lying in the dark.
I joined a group of friends for a long hike on Saturday, a strenuous adventure that was both invigorating and exhausting. We started on a trail that I’d visited several times in the past, but then followed it for another hour or so beyond the section I knew. All up and down, the path well-maintained but kinda intense, with amazing views high over the surrounding hills and inlet: It was just what I wanted, really. By the end of it, my throat was sore and the glands in my neck were swollen… Apparently, all that sweating was pushing some sickness out of my body. So I went home and crashed, sleeping in late this morning.
I’ve been hiking a little every week recently, finding that time in the woods or on rocky peaks or next to the ocean are the perfect antidote to school. Even gardening, which has also been a preoccupation lately, isn’t quite as appealing as a ramble down a trail. Springtime is when I rediscover all the reasons for which I live on the west coast.
Did you ever read Laurie Lee’s As I Walked Out One Midsummer Morning? Our recent sunny spring weather has been reminding of it, and of how that book had an impact on my life. I was too young when I first picked it up, maybe ten years old or so, and even then I was taken by the romantic notion of walking to London, and to Spain. Later, rereading it as teenage punk, I was surprised to realize that it was my beloved anti-fascist International Brigades that Lee went on to fight for, in the Spanish Civil War. In a weird way, Lee was a traveller punk before traveller punks existed, busking on the streets and sleeping in vacant buildings… Though in his case, said buildings were collateral from World War I as opposed to modern industrial capitalism. At any rate, Lee made it seem right, to walk out the door and experience life. I like to think that’s how I ended up here.