Reality… we have met before. For reasons within my own nature I often let you pass and continue on my way. Nothing is going to prove me wrong, especially you. Nothing will stand in my way, especially you. In fact, I kind of hate you. Life is too short for you. It’s like that, is it not…? We all have this one life… and then reality, with the momentum of a thousand storms, comes along and reminds us it isn’t so.
It’s like this… how long can one stand in idealism before reality comes, literally putting its sharp little teeth into one’s own skin. In fact, just in the last few weeks I was paid with numerous unwelcome visits. We had made it to Munich for the Boulder World Cup. Funds were very limited, so going to the team dinner wasn’t an option, nor was much of anything but that was ok: we were there! Besides, all wasn’t lost. I merely had to wait for the pay from work done in July. Optimism said it would arrive in time to make it to Magic wood after the comp as planned.
Then reality hit. Literally two days before the competition which I flew half way across the world for; at a time when I was counting pennies so to afford fresh veg (and handling that pressure with an idealistic nature of ‘just fineness…’ thank you), an email arrived with the headline: “IMPORTANT -do not open until after comp”. Thoughts filled my head about the arrival of this email at such a time. Given the capitalized directions, sending it before the event was totally and completely pointless. All it resulted in was a heavy brick thrown on top of my shoulder; making me imagine up the worst. It was the perfect trigger for the avalanche of reality.
Then there was the comp. I had imagined and told myself to the point of believing it that I could and would indeed, make the Munich World Cup semi-finals. Woooo, now horsey! Nope! Not even close. In fact, in previous competitions I had been closer but I was about as close to making semis as I was to sticking the first dyno. This was not close at all for those not there to witness. Nope. Not this time.
When the competition ended people scattered in all directions. Magic Wood had to wait as the pay hadn’t arrived. We were left to enjoy the streets of Munich on our 15 euro bikes which at times made me feel like I can fly. Only in Munich have I experienced bike traffic; the ins and outs of proper bike etiquette; bells ringing from behind indicating people are nearing to pass. We speed along going nowhere yet all the same, enjoying. I like this city and don’t mind being bound here. With Boulderwelt and its amazing setting my motivation remains high.
Eventually we leave the blissful and impatient city for the solitude of Magic Wood. My excitement at arriving was scorched by disappointing news which confirmed the critic in me that I did not belong. Exclusion is my cursed friend, a common symptom of those with wings. I know I am a loner, always have been. With the exception of a few dear friends, I often sit on the outside, somewhat wishing to belong yet nevertheless enjoying my own private world. Still, humans are social creatures and I’m no exception. Comforting myself, defenses arise saying there is no need. Anyway, a seemingly negative outcome could turn out to be positive. But my dream from last night haunts me. In it, I wasn’t allowed to join the group. They all agreed I smelled too bad; my clothes too dirty; that my general expression didn’t show enough superficiality. Well, let me tell you, it’s all a god dam illusion. For God’s sake people, human hearts are at stake here.
Packing for our first day in the forest, I took a break to find Cedar who was working on her cabin near the woods. During this time, someone went into the little pocket of my bag managing to steal my Ipod. Gone were my camera, photos and right hand man. I know, I know, its only stuff. But it’s the theft by a fellow climber that bothers. It’s the unveiling of the dark side. But really, I should be accustomed. In my early 20’s, when travelling in England, someone stole everything but the small pack on my back. My reaction: laughter. Things are going to be so much lighter now I thought. Two years ago someone broke into my van and stole everything of value including my computer and most beautiful and at this point, irreplaceable, Canon Mark II. Bitterness reached my heart at this loss. So what’s the difference between a theft nearly 20 years ago and now? Perhaps it goes along the lines of a sense of jadedness that comes with age; the sad ordeal of human conditioning. I never thought my insides would arrive at this point. I clearly remember my younger version telling myself that I would never become like the adults…