Nicole passed away on October 21, 2013. I don’t have the energy to write much at this time. She is all I think about. We were together for 14 years. I have embedded a video Nicole created about her and I. I have also posted some photos of her. Also included are a few links of some of our videos, writings, photography, etc. I love and miss her more than I could ever explain in words.
All my life I have tried to pluck a thistle and plant a flower wherever the flower would grow in thought and mind. ~Abraham Lincoln
By means of microscopic observation and astronomical projection the lotus flower can become the foundation for an entire theory of the universe and an agent whereby we may perceive Truth. ~Yukio Mishima
And so our mothers and grandmothers have, more often than not anonymously, handed on the creative spark, the seed of the flower they themselves never hoped to see – or like a sealed letter they could not plainly read. ~Alice Walker
For man, as for flower and beast and bird, the supreme triumph is to be most vividly, most perfectly alive. ~David Herbert Lawrence
All things by immortal power. Near of far, to each other linked are, that thou canst not stir a flower without troubling of a star. ~Francis Thompson
Every flower is a soul blossoming in nature. ~Gerard De Nerval
Everybody has a right to like or dislike anything or anyone. From a flower to a flavor to a book or a composition but it is very sad that in our country we actually fight over such things in an unseemly manner. ~Ravi Shankar
Earth is a flower and it’s pollinating. ~Neil Young
Give fools their gold, and knaves their power; let fortune’s bubbles rise and fall; who sows a field, or trains a flower, or plants a tree, is more than all. ~John Greenleaf Whittier
Blue thou art, intensely blue; Flower, whence came thy dazzling hue? ~James Montgomery
The clearest way into the Universe is through a forest wilderness. ~John Muir
Keep close to Nature’s heart… and break clear away, once in awhile, and climb a mountain or spend a week in the woods. Wash your spirit clean. ~John Muir
In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks. ~John Muir
We are into our second month of what we call ‘exploring the lateral’ and/or seeing what we can see. We usually sleep in the forest, without a tent; actually with no shelter at all save our sleeping bags. Before we set out a couple of months ago, we either threw away or gave away all our possessions save what fits in our backpacks, a few boxes of papers, and some photos (the boxes and photos are in storage). Some say we are intentionally homeless, but we consider the Earth our home. When we set out we had no plans, we didn’t know where we were going or what we were going to do, we just started walking. And walk we did, almost 600 miles so far! It was quite difficult at first what with the freezing weather and rain, but in only a couple weeks, our bodies adjusted. Actually, our bodies have changed drastically. We were both in excellent physical shape before we left. We usually hiked 50-60 miles a week and lifted weights, but those activities cannot compare to carrying 75 and 45 pound backpacks 20 miles a day. Our bodies are more muscular and lean than any other period in our lives. Our senses are much more acute, as is our mental clarity. For the first time in our lives, we feel truly alive. We usually awaken at sunrise to the sound of hundreds of birds singing, and at night, the deer walk within three feet of us. The bucks are highly protective of the does and when they come near us they snort and stomp their feet. We have lost the ability to keep track of time; the days are no longer segmented and all run together. We really have no need for clocks or calendars anymore; we are usually in the moment. We have no plans or goals. Winning, losing, failing and succeeding do not apply. We don’t know what’s going to happen to us or around us, every day is a complete unknown. We live mostly in the right now, and as far as we can tell, it is the only thing that allows us to be sane. We are both former long-term State Hospital patients. Both of us are diagnosed schizoaffective disorder and obsessive-compulsive disorder, but when we are in the forest surrounded by trees, birds and animals all the symptoms just fade away. When we enter a city, however, all the symptoms come rushing back. The smells, sounds etc. of a city cause us to become psychotic, as do the absurdity of bureaucracies, governments and various other social constructions. We are not really anti-civilization, though, we simply cannot live in it. Mathematics, Physics and Philosophy are three of our favorite subjects that we discuss at length daily and every night before we drift off to sleep; these subjects are usually researched and studied at institutions of higher learning, and institutions of higher learning are found primarily in civilization, so we are not anti-civilization, we just cannot exist in civilization. Although, walking through small towns doesn’t seem to bring on states of psychosis like the city.
We have spent the last several years avoiding people. We only went to appointments, hiking in the woods and grocery shopping but we have talked to more people the past two months than the last 10 years. We have met many kinds of people on our journey: some wonderful, generous, cheerful, and happy people. But we have also met a few obstreperous individuals, who feel trapped in jobs and situations that they hate. Even though they make us angry and can even cause us to become psychotic when they lie or attempt to harm us, once we come to our senses we feel sorry for them and hope they too can find peace.
We are doing this blog so we can share our experiences with others that they too can see what we see.