Wednesday, March 3, 2010

in defense of the vagabond.

Momentarily perplexed, her head tilts to one side,  "oh, yeah. No, I remember Patrick telling me about you. You're the one that's putting off life. Ahh." She starts to backpedal. "I mean, the one who travels a lot." She continues to stumble over her words as I prepare for my rebuttal.

I know I still have a lot to learn because this description of my lifestyle still stirs in me a fury like nothing else. A true zen master would draw a deep breath and realize no matter what path we walk, we all endure judgements, critiques, and lots of bad advice. Most of it unwanted, a large chunk unwarranted, but all of it a prerequisite for life.

Regardless of whether it is at the forefront of our minds, we are all searching for purpose in this world. For some it comes in the sleek lines of a sports car. It is for many the creation of a happy, healthy family.  The list of reasons is as long as the world's population. Everyone defines their own sense of purpose.

Of course self-actualization is not delivered in the form of a diploma. No professional photographer is at the corner of the stage ready to snap a shot of this moment into a photo album for your grandkids.  Like a spiritual puberty this process arrives at different times for everyone.

Speaking from personal experience, the nomad is someone, for whatever reason, who is still transfixed by the number of paths before him. Many like to label this sense of wonderment as lost, or better yet lazy. Please feel free to fill in the blank.  The risk is that all of this reads a little self-righteous. Pitting vagabonds against venture capitalists.  Mudslinging from the campfire to the water cooler. Take it for what you will.

Having spent a few days on the slopes with the backpedaling girl we found ourselves on the chair lift, laughing.

"...I keep confusing you with another Brad I know..."
"Just remember, I'm the one who's putting off life."

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