As I looked out the cabin window this morning and watched the golden ‘snowfall’ of leaves dropping quietly to the ground, my mind drifted to wonder where had the years gone. I have walked this earth for about 25,318 days, so what have I accomplished during those 36,457,920 minutes? I see no lives saved or universal benefit to mankind as a whole because of my existence. There was no mountainous climb up some corporate ladder to wealth or breakthrough knowledge that benefited anyone. Instead after all this time I sit alone, at my keyboard masquerading as a writer of something of worth that will touch people’s soul or make them think differently about events happening around them.
I am once again drawn to a soliloquy by Shakespeare elucidating his view of peoples daily lives…..“Tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow creeps in it’s petty pace from day to day…..and all our yesterdays have lighted fools way to dusty death….out out brief candle….life is but a stage where we are but players who strut and fret our lives away…..it is a tale told by an idiot full of sound and fury signifying nothing.” Is our lives truly meaningless and full of nothing? When I look out and see so many self absorbed people that are burying themselves in any distraction so they will not have to deal with reality I may just have to agree with Shakespeare’s words.
But then I also see people who are unselfish and care for there fellow man. They volunteer their time to feed the less fortunate or work in hospitals and nursing homes caring for the elderly and dying. I can see beauty in those who may not have time to volunteer but go out of their way to be kind to neighbors and strangers they meet. I also see many who witness wrongs being committed get involved and try and right those wrongs. Could it be at this time in my life that it is my humble words reaching out and touching some unknown someone, that is my contribution on my road of life?
So like the leaves falling in my driveway
these individual’s though acting alone will by there example
become a flood of golden rays of hope for all of us.
It was a typical September morning, crisp, cold and full of sunshine. As I prepped the ATV and trailer for the drive out to hunt camp my mind wondered to years past when the results of these hunts produced moose steaks for many months. Thinking about those great meals made my stomach rumble as I waited for my partner to arrive and take me to his remote cabin for an late morning breakfast. Normally I hunt solo in the woods near my home, but my friend (promised) the use of his warm cabin in exchange for help with his moose. A warm cabin beats a cold tent any day and he has been promising to meet here on Labor day for weeks now.
Now, we all know, some people make promises and keep them and others do not. Unlike when we hear politicians running for office, you expect a close friend to fulfill their promise. Politicians have a proven track record of making all manner of commitments and never keeping them. One glaring instance of this is President obama promising the millions of illegals that “by Labor day he would write executive orders allowing them to remain in the United States”.
However after being ‘told’ by numerous Democratic Senators and Congressman that if he did that they would loose the mid-term elections he decides to put off any executive actions on illegals till after the elections. He, obama, has said for months that, it is personal not political that he cares about the suffering of the many children and adults from the illegal community, but then he decides to delay any action that will harm his fellow Democrats in the upcoming elections. Maybe he thinks those illegals are stupid and will not remember that he did not keep his word.
obama said he ‘personally’ cares for people from Latin America
yet he decides to wait till after the mid-term elections to act
it seems like a political decision to me!
With overnights from the mid 20’s to 30’s the cabin gets a little cool overnight. and early morning finds me trying in vain to bury myself deeper under the covers. I have once again begun the ‘Alaskan fall habit’ of lighting the stove for a couple hours to take the chill off as the sun now slowly rises over the ‘White mountains’. With the trees now turning golden yellow and the hills covered with lichen an moss bathed in crimson red I think I can safely say fall has arrived.
Oh yes the funeral…Looking back at recent posts it seems that I have discussed: God, road trips, rainy weather, peoples perception, immigration and solar flairs. During this same period the President has ignored an invasion of the Ukraine by Russia, the soon to be world wide epidemic of Ebola, Isis slaughter of Christians in Iraqi and the continued fall of Americas economy. There is more but you get my point. One wonders if he like Nero during the Roman era is now content to just coast out these last two years while the world around him burns. More to the point is the Curmudgeon many of you started to follow on this blog also quietly lying on his death bed ignoring history in the making?
I don’t think I have mellowed any, at least my neighbors don’t think so. So it seems I just needed a break from the reality of the world around me. However unlike most of the people in America who maintain this ignorance of (hard to live with) current events I will not bury myself in distractions.
I will endeavor to resurrect that curmudgeon
that most have come to know and look forward to on these postings.
The river’s frigid water washed across his sandaled feet, the only sounds heard was his footsteps accenting his words. He stopped now and then to emphasized something he was saying, looking at me akin to a father talking to his child. I knew this was just a creation of my mind embodying my thoughts into a mental image of God, literally taking me by the hand and showing me his handiwork in everything that surrounded me.
With now nearly two straight months of rain and clouds it has somewhat restrained my outside activities and one does many things to fill the day and break any potential monotony that may be accumulating. Living alone, with no personal contact for days on end I have found that I have a great amount of uncluttered time to think about whatever takes my fancy. One topic, ‘the meaning of life’, has remained a constant over the decades and is one most of us have pondered. However I cannot go down this well traveled road of the meaning of life without encountering the detour sign for the existence of God.
For myself the question about the meaning of life would be eliminated if I could surrender my whole being and completely accept the existence of God. Then life would have a single path with road signs and directions, (the bible). I would never again have to think about why I am here and what is my purpose. It would be simple if it were not for the many different churches and the, (frail and flawed), human element of ministers, clergy and priests.
Priests, ministers and clergy of all religions are human and none are flawless thus their instructions to us ‘lay people’ are at times clouded with their interpretation of God’s word. One shinning example, for me, is when a priest would not marry me and my first wife….because I was too young. Suffice it to say I did marry her and we lived as husband and wife for 28 years until she died. I am wondering where in the bible did it say that a man could not marry when he was 18?
Sometimes even the head of a church interprets things, and at times creates rules that have no solid base in scripture. Take for instance Catholics not being allowed to eat fish on Friday. For decades it was a law in our church and then a new Pope decides it is OK to eat fish? Or the Amish and their adherence to the strictest of dress codes or how about the Mormons and their principle of no caffeine? As a young boy in school I would listen and follow whatever the Pope or for that matter a priest or nun told me to do. Now older and able to think things through I see that many ministers and those in charge pontificate knowledge that we are to blindly accept.
At 48 I thought I found a meaning for my life when my wife was diagnosed with Scleroderma but when she died I was again floundering and searching until my parents need help in their last days. Now surely I found my purpose to spend my years doing what I could to improve their lives. Sadly they passed within ten months of my wife. Once again adrift without direction until my son asked for help on a project he had here in Alaska.
So sitting here nearing the end of life’s road I believe I have a better prospective on the question. Living in the big city it is harder for one to find the proof of Gods existence, whereas here I can see it daily in the splendor he has created. From majestic panoramas to the birth of a newborn baby in a smiling woman’s arms. So possibly one meaning for our lives could be to learn to recognize these wonders and reach out to those around us either physically or emotionally and bring a spark of happiness into their lives.
Could it then that our purpose in life
may be to realize what God has created for us
and to help others to see that beauty.
I had just finished dinner tonight and was sitting in my easy chair when I thought my heart was pounding so hard I would have a heart attack, turns out it was the chair rocking because of a 5.3 earthquake outside of Fairbanks!
Alaska is a land full of surprises
There are many mornings, during the summer, when I am down at the ‘Arctic circle trading post’ having coffee that I encounter visitors to Alaska. The Trading post is of course a wilderness gift shop, so it draws tour buses and the occasional independent traveler. As I drink my warm brew and wait for the fog to clear my head I muse as to what these people from around the world think of their time in Alaska. On Tuesday and Wednesday I had a chance to experience first hand what they might encounter as they traveled a small part of my state.
If you have been following my blog you know that rain not sunlight has dominated the summer this year across the state and the weather on this drive would be no different. I had postponed the trip a couple times wanting clear sky’s so I could once again see the glory of the Alaskan range while driving the Parks highway. The road at and just passed Denali is worthy of taking time to stop and absorb the majesty of the surrounding mountain range. It was however not to be, because the snow capped mountains were shrouded in clouds and even the lower mountains did not vibrate with color because of the lack of sun.
When you add to this the endless number of RV’s and buses on the road
throw in numerous road construction delays you have a 690 mile drive worthy of a record breaking headache.
But then this is after all Alaska and if you travel for a while the weather does change
and I did encounter brief glimpses of the sun at seemingly the just the right moment to be rewarded by a couple majestic panoramas.
I offer you my family and readers a scant few of the images I captured while on this drive. Like any photograph it never does justice to being there but if you use your imagination……