Just another traveler on life’s highway hanging out in the slow lane. It’s quiet. It’s peaceful. Beyond the horizon is rest beckoning me. Green pastures, still waters, my cup overflows. Surely goodness and mercy will follow me.
Book, Candle, Desk, Chair, Pen & Sleeping Mat.
This is what it has come to, my friends. As I look around at the accumulation of stuff which has followed me around for 53 years since the day I rented my 1st living space, I sigh and mutter to myself, “Is this all there is?”
No, I’m not having a Peggy Lee moment. I am simply tired of the baggage in my life. Looking at the cupboard which I lovingly restored in 1972, the wash stand stripped of paint and returned to its original beauty, the rocking chair which rocked my great-grandfather as he listened to his floor model Motorola radio, and the old dishes in the cupboard which also set in my Grandma’s “shunk”, I realize that as I carted them from numerous abodes in Pennsylvania to Florida in 1995, the memories traveled with them. And those memories will always be with me until the memory banks fail or die.
But the stuff, oh Lord, the stuff that keeps me from living in a cave or in a monastery, or in the woods in a tent, or in a room up in somebody’s garret. Just a book, a candle, a desk, a chair, pen and sleeping mat today screams to me, “Freedom!”
Some of my recovering friends would say that I need a thorough housecleaning, an internal inventory to alleviate my travail. But, although they are often right, this is not the case today. I simply need simplicity. I am tired and I am ready to embark on a different and exciting journey, a new QUEST.
You may challenge me with, “From what are you running, Larry?”
Truly, I have run from many things in my life, mostly myself. But, I know what ‘running from’ is like. This is different. This is running towards the place where I hope to spend the last few years of my life – a simple, uncluttered life. If I sincerely trust that a higher power will provide for my needs, then what I desire should not be impossible. If I really believe that all my material needs can be packed in a suitcase and a backpack, then what is holding me back?
Commitments. Yes, sadly I still have commitments to other people. Those who have stood by me for many years now rely on me for comfort and security. The shared responsibilities of a shared life with another person cannot be abandoned even when increasingly difficult. Even Max, the cat, depends on me for his survival. And who would clean this house and cook the dinners and make sure the bills get paid on time? Who? Tell me, who?
Ahhh, it’s a pipe dream, is it not? Freedom’s just another word for nothing left to lose. Someday I will be free. Until then I have my stuff and my responsibilities and Max.