Photo by Miah Oren

Out of Touch with the Butterflies

by Miah Oren

I’m out camping without my phone this week, but there’s no service anyway. If something has happened, if a client has a question, when I have something to tell my roommate, I can’t get in touch. Here I hear the silence mingled with wind, birds, the nearby stream, the waterfall above us. The animal from last night foraging in the undergrowth. I can hear the leaves blowing in the wind. I’m always outside. There are no stores to visit, no restaurants to hang out at, no updates on world news.

And I am dirty. I haven’t showered in 4 days. My clothes are full of dirt, tree sap, breakfast, and pine cone pieces. My nose is burned and I have no mirror to see how Rudolph-like I might be.

I only have the food choices I brought with me. I can only get so warm as the layers I have. I finished my book and I don’t have another so I’m reading it again.

And I have enough.

I have shelter, food, water, and company. There’s beautiful scenery, a large notebook to write in, and time to sit and think. I don’t have any appointments, no place to drive to, no traffic, no advertisements, and very few decisions except what flavor of beans and rice should I eat today and which part of the log looks most comfy to sit on.

I’m tired of stuffing my toilet paper in a bag to pack out. I know I would sleep better in my own bed. I have things I’d like to share about my trip with friends and family, like the time when I slept in the trunk of my car. But there will be time for all of that later. The bed will be better, food will be more exciting, and it will be special instead of normal to talk to my friends.

It’s good to calm down and rethink what I’ve left behind and what I want to do ahead.

Next week at work there won’t be any bees flying around me as I write. But there won’t be any butterflies either.

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