The clouds seemed bleak today. Today of all days he needed some sunshine. Something to blast him into a better state of mind. Something to break the monotony of his daily existence. He went about his daily routine under the weight of a wet blanket.
Something had to give, something had to change. Back and forth he went in his mind. Back and forth between ritual and routine, and new and exciting. He
played his guitar; he went for a walk. He wrote in his journal; he went for another walk. Even the sweet
release of the smoking of his cigarettes fell short of invigorating his senses from the humdrum repetition
of his life. He craved something new, something exciting. All his plans fell to the wayside. All his aspirations, crashing into nothingness. He longed for the days when he felt excitement fill his soul. Nothing new was on the horizon, nothing he could see.
Granted each new day brought with it a sense of opportunity. But today was different. Today he could not even get out of his own way. The things he
loved turned to ash. The routines he had so carefully manicured fell into ruin. He needed a new plan of
attack. A new sense of rebirth.
He thought about his life before the malaise took over. Wake, coffee, smoke; make the day great with actions and love. Run through the hills and forests with a sense of wonder and abandon. Take the day by the reins and evolve into a better man. These things were what he loved. Arts and motions. Creativity and betterment.
He would laugh with gusto and face each day with a heroic sense of accomplishment. But those days were gone, maybe forever. He could not accept that, though. He had to believe that better days were yet to come. Forlorn he felt himself being at the moment. A depressive sense that all
was for naught. He fought against this current with all of his being. Knowing that it was just a passing phase. But damned if it did not take all of his considerable might to fight the feeling.
A different point of view, a change in scenery was what he craved. And he had done just that.
He’d flown home to the glorious state of California to escape the brutally harsh winter of the north east. At first, he had had a clean slate. A vision of wonder. But after being cooped up in the house within which he was raised for two months, the routine was wearing thin. Cycles and cycles. They made him weary. An artist contained within a bubble was never good. Walls were never good for creativity. They made
one feel trapped. This was never good for the mind, let alone the process that invented things from midair. But, as our artist kept reminding himself, these days were not the end. These days were just a passing phase through which to persevere. Golden days lay ahead. Golden days of writing, rehearsing,
playing, composing, walking, running, playing. Days filled with sunshine, both from above and within.
Those were the days he was waiting for to return. Maybe not all at once but in stages he could handle. He longed for the days when he could return to the woods. And play. Return to the work of trail cutting and maintenance. When he would load up his tools on his back and march out into the wilderness. Not
to slash and destroy but to thin and clean. Access was the ultimate goal. One couldn’t enjoy the woods if one couldn’t get into them. He wanted to burn again. Nothing like spending the day clearing under growth and small saplings and spending the night burning it all away. He’d keep the bigger pieces to
make fences. The bigger stumps to make tables and stools. Those days made him feel like a man. Doing
mans work. Taking a swath of woods and cleaning them up. Not all the way, mind you, but just enough
to enjoy a winding walk through the woods.
Then came the day when he wretched his back. He couldn’t move let alone go into those woods again. Weeks turned into months before he could walk again, before he could hike again. He certainly still, to this day, couldn’t work in those beloved woods.
Then, there was the matter of drinking. He could work all day long as long as there was beer to drink and weed to smoke. But even that became old. If one spends too much time within the haze of a buzz, life slips on by. Days into weeks, weeks into months, months into years. It was a bad habit any way you looked at it. Hiking with a couple of beers was exhilarating. And after making that the norm hiking without one seemed droll.
With his back injured even taking a leisurely stroll down the path he had so carefully manicured was an arduous journey. But stroll it he did for it was his legacy. His love. Slowly his back got stronger and he made it around the looping trail with more and more ease. His friends would join him and after taking a long hiatus from the drinking and smoking did he find again a beer in hand wasn’t that bad.
A couple puffs of weed was just what he needed. All in moderation. All in moderation. But today was not a woods day. Today was a day that wouldn’t let him shine. Today he felt trapped in his own mind. Today was an off day. Sure, he would try and play guitar again, sure, he would go for a stroll. But it all felt humdrum. Just another day trapped in the circular repetition. He would break the cycle. He would push though the head fog. Today he would make a better day than whence it started. With these thoughts glowing strongly in his mind, he got up and made it happen.