Posts Tagged ‘decisions’

Down the familiar path I could go no further,
blocked by a padlocked gate
and a sign saying closed for season
I could have gone before
and thought about it
more than than once
but it seemed so far
and i had gone far enough,
on another day
a trail to the side called me more
I was not even sure today
but i said i’d go
around the bend
to see what was there
hidden to me
out of my sight.

I sat at the rest area
having emerged from one section of the canyon
now overlooking a wider valley
a more open vista
which narrowed to another section of the canyon further down
and it called,
i deliberated and set out on the path
but at the bottom it was closed.

So i sit once again in the no name rest area
a lawn mover rides behind me
and i wonder about my plans
to go back to where i have been before
to a place that calls, but i hesitate
something not quite…
what i love, but

I was not quite sure this time either,
the walk beyong the bend
to the hidden secrets
or not
a walk in the strong sun
the sun that burns
and beside the highway and its roar and din
on the other day i did not go either
for the same reason
the discomforts of the path
or was it the path itself?

The path is now closed
the river rises more every day
and will for some time to come
overflowing banks and paths
flowing over its given bounds.
I heard before that it was closed further down,
or rather upstream,
beyond where i could walk,
at least in both directions
able to return to town
beyond the dam with its controlled flow
or was it the power plant
a bicycle could not pass
i had thought of the river
and the other and floods elsewhere
and imagined getting trapped
in the heavy flows of spring.
of winter melt off
when that which was frozen in place
becomes fluid and releases
rushing out to sea
connecting with that of other mountain tops
and valleys of the world.
but that was beyond where i planned to go today.

This morning i made a choice
to come through to this place,
through a canyon where i had already been
through a place that calls forth beauty and joy
where i knew that god speaks,
and did speak strongly today,
revealing paths and wisdom along the way
calling forth my heart and soul once again
my destiny,
and mysteries of the world,
connecting me with the all.

It was in the canyon, holding in
the place where the river flows
beyond whose walls i could not see
and sought a broader view

i came to this place where i now write
and will turn around from here
a decision to be made
one i lingered on
asking for more to be revealed
now wondering if the path i imagined will be blocked
or if it was all along
or maybe it shows the place
the place to where i must go.

I had thought of heading upwards today,
ascending up the boy scout trail
to a mountain top that provides vistas of the valley below
But it was more a should, then a call
I asked why i did not go,
a new experience, a different view,
but then as the sun glared upon my face
i knew it was not for me
and sat in the shade and wrote some words
words that i hesitate to reveal
and then walked along the highway path
to the canyon i had been and loved,
one that had been new to me
less than three weeks before.
As i walked my arm swung as if on its own
like a pendulum, dowsing something unknown.

I had started up that other path a few days ago,
exposed, on the edge of the mountain
cliffs falling below
the wind picked up and the sun burned hard
and i turned around,
admitting to myself that this was not where i wished to go
admitting what i knew at the bottom of the trail
and came back down
but when i spoke to others who had done the hike
i felt that maybe i had not done far enough,
that maybe i had fallen short,
even though i felt “off” along that trail
and thought maybe i should today.

i walk back into the canyon
following the rivers flow,
around no name bend
the place where the guardians reveal themselves,
still facing the decision on where to go,
this walk itself, a way of procrastinating,
to buy the ticket or not
a decision on hold,
delaying in the zone of impasse.

The place of impasse where i have been
the walk, any walk, a way of delay
of putting off once again
something planned in my mind
but action not taken
the questioning, the shoulds
the i don’t knows
and maybe that was why the path was blocked,
for i could not put it off anymore.

Over the past few days, the northwest called more strongly again
images constantly entering my mind and soul,
a place i have been and left many a time
my heart sung, and inside a smile
a locale brewing up inside
of trees, and life, of an environment that spoke to me,
where i felt more akin,
for from here i knew i had to go,
had known for quite a while
the visitation time over,
and i knew i would, not, could not, stay.

i thought i should head back by a route not taken
and lands never explored,
a circutous route to the north and wild,
through the lands where i felt i should see
but a resistance came up inside,
and part of me asked why?
part of me said, take the train, the same route as before
it is direct, do you really need to explore any more.
Was it difference i sought, or an avoidance of the familiar,
the paths too well worn
become ruts, getting deeper
or so i thought
or was it felt.
But it was calling so deep
as it had been for some time
i telling myself no – not again.

Crescent lake had been beckoning,
the olympic pennisula.
my trip to pass through locales i thought i left behind,
and i hesitated again,

Now the path is blocked,
is this a sign
and i wondered
will the ticket price rise too high,
for i asked god, to let me know, to provide a sign
and the ticket price was part of the deal.

As i sat in the bend by the wall where the guardians were
where much had been revealed a few hours before
Out of the blue another locale came up
one i had not thought of before,
en route to another town with crescent in its name
and off to fantasy land i went,
and felt a peace inside, this is where i must go
i do not know why.

As i approached town, and the time to decide
to make the deliberation concrete,
some anxiety arose
but i was convinced that i would go,
and was told yes, that is your destiny,
the corner where you belong,
and klamath falls kept coming up over and over again
not as the final place
but the where to next.

I went to town, to check the website first
and the ticket price had gone up
several dollars beyond the limit i set
still i looked at that other place
and the price remained in reach,
quite reasonable indeed.
Was this where i am meant to be
for the moment that is.
I asked, should i, should i, and the answer was yes
over and over again.
so i bought a ticket leaving the next day
and felt at peace with the decision i made,
my heart still welling up inside
and the internal smile as i sat by the water.
I obeyed a call,
but somehow i felt i would not go.

It is two days later and i am still here,
part of another story not yet written
the ticket to the second place,
the departure now set and changed to several days away.
And all seems less clear.
Asked to help out here,
after another quit
a person left in a bind
a request i had also called forth many a time
not here per se,
but to be asked and called upon to serve
to be offered a chance
to be wanted,
to hear, Alice can you stay.
To earn some money, even a little bit
to help me on my path
so here i am, working for 5 days
until this place is under new ownership and management
(another story to be posted soon).
Inside i had known this was a possibility,
one i resisted inside,
told myself i would say no
but when the time came the answer was yes.

I am still here
in this place
this place i wanted desperately to leave
but the energy feels different
and i feel at peace
that this was where i was meant to be
even though i know i will not stay,
it is a rest area like that where i stopped on the path.
The river flows
another one
joining the colorado, the one where the path was blocked
I am downstream
but the water rises every day
flowing faster with passing time
expanding, lipping the shores ever more closely
going out to sea.
But inside i am calm,
though murky, like the water with winter run off

i do not really know what lay ahead
but will continue with the flow
my true path not blocked,
for the line is not straight,
just the path i was on that day,
a path i sought out, but also used to avoid
acting on that deeper voice inside.

Still i have 2 days to go,
and feel that something may come up
something i do not know
and one day, i may read what i wrote, and see the message here.

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i dont know whether to look outside or within – the cycle repeats itself and i am tired and do not know how to stop – i find myself in a familiar place wanting to leave, i have wondered, or it has eaten at me, if i had expended all the effort i have to keep moving on, how easily i could have stayed somewhere and built or created a life – but the question is where and how. still i expend effort doing what i feel is killing me but i feel propelled to keep moving on and living irresponsibly – but how to take a stand – do something, join in the dance of life. lord i am tired. in the past two weeks i have spent time looking elsewhere, figuring out trips i do not take, how much time wasted and it eats at me, as it has before and puts me into a zone of no good.

I wrote the above paragraph almost two weeks ago in santa cruz where i succumbed to darkness and since then i have moved on twice – first to San Francisco and now here to Salt Lake City. And i feel that i will move on again but with more clarity.

I got into San Francisco in the early evening and the following morning i felt like i was meant to stay for a while. actually when i got in i wondered that and looked around online and in the neighborhood for SROs (the cheap hotels, many run down or drug dens that rent by the week) as i was tired of looking and searching on. i had walked familiar areas the night before, and then passed by the library and picked up some books on place, something i had also done in Santa Cruz, and felt like i was meant to be there and write. the hostel in city center was booked for the following week, i had used up my time at fisherman’s wharf, many other hostels need you to prove that you don’t live nearby or in state, and my energy said no to the SROs. So i booked five nights at the downtown hostel in union square with some apprehension and dread. But after doing so i felt calm, and thought i could escape the planning zone. but alas i could not.

Later that day and then the next, salt lake called to me and i pursued the call not knowing if it were a temptation or the true call for me. The train was very cheap for the following days, but not on the day i was due to check out. Still, i checked in for the five days, but then later cancelled the last three. I was in the land of indecision for a while, the land which kept me from focusing and living though i was able to engage and grow in my time there. That entry is yet to come.

I don’t believe that i will be long term in Salt Lake, and i understand some of the reasons why, but being here i also know that it was right to leave the coast, and to come here. I had been thinking of leaving for so long, but was afraid of what lay beyond, and found myself trapped in a circle or downward spiral out there. This year when i was in oregon i tried to cross over many a time, and even my trip to harbin was initially in part to help release myself from the coast, and in yosemite, i initially thought of crossing over and out the other side, or then catching a train to the southwest, and have had mutterings before – colorado when i go back from alaska, montana when i was in washington this year and last and more. So i have finally made a move, the leap i was talking about.

I still don’t know the answer to the questions “could i have just stopped” or “was i not meant to stop there” and i never will, for i did not, and the time is now, and the place is here. though i say that i still have some entries i need to clean up and finish from there and then – for i want the process to be recorded.

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I feel asleep last night listening to the sea lions bark and i felt content. I had come what felt like a long way, only 150 miles or less as the crow flies, but it took over 15 hours and took me through many zones. Tonight – the night after much of this was written – i feel light years away from where i had been – both outside and in.
-My body warned me – or rather my energy – going into a panic that was not just of mind. I wondered if it was merely self-talk, but i decided it was more and i am glad i listened. I am on the train, bleary eyed after waking just after 5am and barely sleeping at night. I am on the way to Monterey, not to Sacramento where i almost went. I had a ticket to there, and reservations (so i thought) but something screamed a loud ‘no’, you will not be able to stay so i changed my plans back to what they were in the first place – plans i had backed away from out of fear. Though there is something that still does not sit quite right.

I had thought of going back to the coast from the mountains where i was. Last time i had headed up north, and the time before to Sacramento and then north as well. i still feel called east, but i avoided the temptation to new mexico. And of that i still feel good. But going to monterey, i feel like i am repeating a cycle, and i wish to travel no more. every place has its activities and i do not know what i will do there. but the ocean calls, and a town where people really live. And as i am on the train, i realize it had not just been the city i had wanted to return to last time i left yosemite, but to that conference that i had turned my back upon – not willing to commit or take a chance. And i realize that it is not where i am, but what i am doing that counts. And i have invested so much in seeking and wandering, that i have been doing very little.

I panicked last night and did not really want to leave but i had already stayed a day too long, a day of hiding away, getting closed in by the hills and the negativity in my mind. Something that i need to shake off for i feel that i had drifted back to a person i thought i had let go of. I had thought of the coast, but muttered off and on for days. i stayed an extra day because i felt sick and tired one day, but now as i ride the train i wonder if it was because of the place, physcial mental, and emotional where i was. for i want to plant roots in a place i may spread my branches, and not merely hide away. And there at the bug and in the park before, i felt that is was hiding, that it was not a place where i could expand or positively link for the other energies there.

So anyways i waited until the evening to try to make a reservation after pondering and worrying most of the day (and we know what energy that feeds and becomes) but i was closed in by walls, and myself, and drew down into me. My phone did not work in the hostel as it had not in the park, and i discovered the monterey hostel was not on the toll-free line for all the other hostels in the land and needed a 48 hour advance notice to book on-line. i had seen earlier in the week that they had space over the weekend. The bus to the train station would leave the hostel stop at 620am, so it would be an early morning again – i had my options, trains leading to sacramento, new mexico and beyond could be caught at 10am – and i could call from down there.

The moon was full and i did not sleep, my mind turning over and over again. But i got up just past 5am, went outside and looked at the moon, and carried my bags down the hill to the bus that would take me to merced. I wanted to sleep on the way down, out of the mountains and to the hills, hills that rolled gently beneath the sky that was waking up for the day, and that provided a vista and space to see beyond. I got to the amtrak station about 730, and had to wait to make a call – now that my cell phone had service once again. I walked around what seems to be a poorer nieghborhood =- people walking on the street, people of colour, police, run down homes and a convenience store with bars – and called the monterey hostel just past 8 and got the answering machine. i tried again and still the same, so i became worried, and called sacramento where i made a reservation for the night – i though of there since i could go from many directions from that stopping point and it was a place where people lived. There waa a three night limit per year if you are not a member, and the woman while professional was not welcoming at all – i only have a passport and nothing showing an address and she muttered and said we normally require something more, did i have any mail or something more. i thought i did.

i bought a train ticket for 10am and then began to feel uneasy once again. I panicked, became tight, imagining myself sleeping on the street. I searched my bags, had cleaned them out, and nothing more recent showing an address. the no grew louder in my mind, over and over, so i decided to change my mind. i called to cancel and said i know i will have to pay a fee, and she said no, the reservation is for saturday, we do not take same day reservations and today is friday after all. i was not merely projecting, but felt something was off.

I am in san Jose where i have waited for over four hours – the bus from stockton was late by just a few minutes, but long enough to miss my connection. When i called the hostel this morning i said i might be in on the second bus, though the schedule said i would make the first. I felt it would happen, was that a premonition, is it something i caused -i don’t believe so but the idea that our thoughts have power. The bus was late to arrive, something that others in line let on is often the case, and the driver with attitude took forever to load, and then sat and relaxed in his seat for quite a while. It was out of my control but it happened, and i worried and fretted on the bus here – although i knew there was nothing that i could do, and it was something i had prepared myself for. Still, it shows how off my energy has become and how uncertain i am about this journey.

I was able to go into town for a few hours to eat and walk and drink coffee. i persuaded the guy at the amtrak station to take my bags for free – the charge was only $3 but as i just missed the connection by a few minutes, something i felt was the drivers fault, he let me after i hesitated moving aside and raised a small stink. still, i think that path may have been stalwarted, several obstacles in the way, and have i pushed to hard for something i know is just a way of marking time. But being in the city made me glad i had not gone to sacramento for i felt off in the place. It is a nice downtown, with transit systems, tree lines streets, new buildings and a few old, an art gallery, a museum, a large church, a conference center and more, a park with benches and many chain restos around, but while the facade is nice, at 3pm on a friday afternoon, it seems devoid of life. i want to say people do not live there, though a safeway is downtown. A few workers in suits as i came back to the station, but mainly those in the day who looked like they never had anything to do (like myself). And the colour divide was large.

And taking the bus to here, brought back my feelings on california – the divide is great, the broken down and the shiny new which who knows how long will last – or what is behind those walls. New communities of silicon that still shine with wide boulevards full of cars and cars and more cars, and others that seem so gritty and broken down. in stockon the stations were in depleted areas, and we drove through warehouses of grey and fences, and the only life was a few with shopping cars leaving a foodbank in nomans land.

I sat outside at the bug which now seems forever away, and cried i can not go on anymore like this, the panic that hits when it is time to move on, the panic that hits when it is time to move on, but there i felt i could stay no longer, that i was merely eating myself up inside. But now i wonder.
I have also had a premonition about not being able to stay in monterey or my reservation being messed up – i hope this is not the case.
I have been in monterey for two days now and believe i should not have forced the trip. i listened not to go to sacramento, which was another holding place with which i am less familiar, but i ignored and pushed through the blockages to come here, not listening to that voice inside. Listening only to that voice of temptation that called for a momentary respite. And that feeling i could not stay – is true to a certain extent – to visit yes, as i have before, but not to stay for a long time. And this is familiar as is the energy that has returned to me.

I arrived at night, my first time in a while arriving in the dark. Days are shorter as the fall equinox has passed. A last mess up on the city bus where we missed the stop for the hostel – another woman was At first i was happy to breathe the moister air and listen to the sea lions at night, and to be inside a place with books and coming here and the driver asked if this is where we were going when we got on – but talked to other passengers and did not see that the driver had changed – and the new one did not know where we were to go. So i did not ring, and he passed the stop, but 15 hours after i left the yosemite bug, i found myself here –
And to listen for a real call, and not to retreat again and to learn to hear truly and not selectively.

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Vernal falls trail –
This place is another world. walking up the hill i feel different and lighter and i know it is not just the effort i have exerted. On the bus ride in, we pass through el portal – the portal and enter into another zone – rock formations are more prominent, trees change and all becomes more alive. The valley is a special world, a fantasy land we come to; passing through harsher lands on all sides to get here; protect the area, falls of civilizations, the remains.

I felt my energy shift and loosen as I headed up the trail and something profound around, but i did not feel transported to another dimension as before. Had the last time been a random chance, or was i ready for god’s grace at the time? Did i need then to be shown the absolute, a strong vision in order to believe, just as my body, heart and soul must scream loudly before i listen? Has the energy shifted here as on the coast? Or are there certain times where it is more active – an interaction of the earth with the stars, planets, sun and sky? given the profound astrological alignments of the past year, how has the earth been altered? Or do i not see it now because i had not purified myself? but then again had i last time?

I climb higher – the mist trail is open – climb the steep steps to the top of Vernal Falls. Another world opens up of pools of water and stone. The water is calm and the pools feel contained, and the mountains glisten across the way. I sit in the new land that i have discovered and think about heading further on up to another land. Nevada Falls lay above and i head up a trail and watch them from a distance – from the bridge that crosses the stream. The trail leads to the top, and to what is most certainly another land.

I am near the top of the bridge above the emerald pools and i feel off kilter once again. I do not continue the hike up to the top of Nevada Falls -I am confused, I say no. It does not feel right – but i watch so many others crossing over, my mind starts to chatter – why do i avoid going to the top. If i dont go, am i a wimp? That is how i feel. I know it leads up, to another zone i cannot see, another portal perhaps? The place of lords or others? but i do not feel like going – is it that i am afraid to make the effort? I feel that i cannot make it there – i am tired. I am confused. I walk over the bridge and the path veers away from the river into the drier woods where all i see is trees. A man is yelling on his cell phone. Two hikers come down looking sad and tired. I pause for a while and turn back again, recrossing the bridge and sit on the rock slope that overlooks the stream.

I sit and smoke and feel calm as i look out. Maybe this is as far as i am meant to go. I feel good here now. Maybe i will just write for a while. My water bottles drop out of the pockets on my bag and role down the sloping rock face where i sit and into a gully and disappear from view. Is this a sign? Fate determined? I know now that i was right. i am resigned. I want to stay here but i feel thirsty in the sun. i think i can make it down to the bottom of vernal falls where a fountain provided water to drink. I turn back.

I walk out to the bridge that crosses the stream to look up to Nevada Falls one more time. I see my water bottles down below on a ledge and am relieved they did not go flying over the falls. I can reach the ledge, i do not have to turn back. I scramble down a space between the boulders to get to them and return to where i was sitting. still undecided. will i be mad at myself if i turn back? Is being able to retrieve them a sign that maybe i just need to take a little step? I had given up, but then i looked beyond. Am i just out of my comfort zone? Or is something telling me a bigger no? The sky changes and clouds come in, just a few but…. the trail on the other side veers away from the creek into the woods – i stare at the dome. I don’t know what i feel? Peace seems to have disappeared. Is it merely a loosening of the stuff inside?

I go back to the bridge and cross it again – two girls are in front of me – they ask an older man how far it is to the top of the falls. He has a map. he and his wife had just walked a few more minutes on – to the bottom of the falls – and have decided to take another route. i go that far, a glimpse of beauty and then turn around – content and at peace.

Going down i am glad i did – my legs feel a bit like jelly. I slip on a step – not enough to fall, but enough to know i did my share. I admire the rainbows once again at the bottom of vernal falls, rest for a while on a boulder by the creek lovely. I am smiling when i come to the bottom of the trail.

(in the week that follows, i wonder if i should go back and try for the top but i never do, in fact, i do not get up to the emerald pools again)

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Today finds me back in seattle and the rains continue to pour down. This morning and last night i sat on Vashon and felt i could crawl inside no more. But then this morning i felt like i wanted to stay to spend some time meditating and healing the self, but two large groups were coming in for the weekend, one taking over the barn with all of its common space, and the other was large and would fill the other inside. So i decided to leave rather than spend time out in the teepee in the rain. Though i wish to reach out and connect, being a lone individual in a hostel or places full of groups generally leads me to feel more lonely as they are connected and you are outside.

So i left the solitude of the place and am back in the city for one night, but felt disconnected and off kilter, trying to figure out where to go. And that is where i am, in decision zone, neither here nor there or anywhere, but retreating into a now panicked mind, for this hostel is booked up tomorrow and i am drawing a blank on future connections and nothing calls me forth. and i think i am emptied out. I have reentered that stressed out nervous zone of the body and mind, not focused, jittery energy but not alive. This is a nervousness that has been upon me many times before, when planning, when neither here nor there, when the bubble is still around but the inside is not still.

I did not let go of places and that is why i am still here – stuck in this rut. I had alaska on my mind since i arrived in back the USA, and though i knew i did not want go to there, i did not let it go and it consumed space that could have been used to bring forth a new idea and life. and i am here because i wanted to write about my past journeys instead of continue the journey forward and beyond. and how many times have i not let go gently of what lay behind, i bring the strings with me, caught up in the web, and then when i can stand it no longer, i try to destroy what has held me bound, will i learn just to move on and if i am truly to return, to return and if not to just go on when a place still is dear to me. for now, i want to leave the northwest, but i cannot see how to move out.

this morning i thought live for the now, don’t be imprisoned by the past. But my mind now wanders into old ruts, and old patterns as storms gather all around. that was yesterday now, and i spent the night tossing and turning barely awake, still not knowing what to do. And this is the nervousness that is destroying me. I went into the smoking room, and the devil was playing there, so much dark energy around, people drinking and getting high, and it makes me fear that i will sink down. For i see the down of indecision and impasse. I sit in a cafe writing unable to eat the breakfast they provide, and just don’t know how much longer i can survive. for my mind takes me back on down the coast, alternatives shut off and i don’t know what to do. Can i move on, or did i blow the chances, all those times i have not let go.

the day is grey, rain threatens again – where is the summer time that is due to come? i ask myself should i have stayed with the huge groups and i know the answer is no, but that is how i do not let things go. i think of the south, california and beyond, for that was the last place i was content, but i also spent much time off kilter there. the last time i felt alive, and talked with others and that is what made the place. And while i wanted to move beyond the bubble the stillness of the country rain, now i want to crawl back in again – for the bubble still surrounds, but it is no longer a calm friendly place. Lord, please help me today.

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“Why are some afraid of bliss?” she asked as she sat on the centre carpet in the temple before the yoga class. Her face was serene and filled with joy, and she had told of how the winter had transformed her, and now she was able to see and feel the bliss even more. Gone home, prepared to engage, and for a few hours just let herself be, feeling the joy and connection of eternity. I was groggy, a cool damp morning, having just awoken from a long deep nights sleep, the day still coming to me. I smiled inside as she read some quotes and sang, feeling joy and peace inside, but when she said that i thought of some moments where my bliss had turned, like the calm before the storm. For those moments are fleeting, and we can not hang on to the highs they bring, and i remembered times where they had been the calm before the storm, if they were just preparation for me.

Calm falls over, i feel connected to the universe. And for a moment, i feel truly at bliss transported to another world. I have glimpses of god, and faith. I have been feeling that more and more, in waves over that past week or two. And during my last few days at fisherman’s wharf a sense of inner peace. In Yosemite i catch sight of the divine. But then suddenly it shifts.

A feeling of dread and unease rushes up. As if all is to coming crashing down, if this is but a moment that cannot last, for nothing ever does. But i felt a shattering, as if something is about to break. And i wait, hoping it is not is real..little thoughts in the park, conflict, my stuff, my food eaten – remembering an experience that happened at Yosemite Bug two years ago and several others with greater implications for my life. I go back all is fine, but the feeling that this bubble i am in is about to explode, continues to grow and grow, as if all will be swept away from under my feet.

Two years ago i spent almost a week at the Yosemite Bug and went into the park several times. I had been up in the park, a cool winter day, and walked along the river bank by the campground, a path where few were to be seen. The sun came out and i sat down, some areas free of snow, and watched and listened to the river and looked out to the granite mountains and felt a peace inside, something greater possessing me. i felt so still and there i sat with the peace and calm i had been seeking for a while. For i had come up there a nervous wreck, thrown off-balance and disconnected, anxious  not knowing what was next. I had been to the park a few days before i know and walked the grounds of the bug, some of that stress had dropped, but i knew that i needed calm and quiet and peace. And for a little while i was feeling bliss and connected to the world.

Then out of nowhere thoughts came through, fears about returning to the hostel, an agitation, a fight in hand, others partying and pushing me out or taking my food. now the hostel had been quite, it was a weekday and i had a dorm room with one other and to myself the night before, and i did not know why i felt this way. But the thoughts held on, the images and agitation, and though i got up to walk i could not shake them off. They fleeted in and out but i lost that bliss and that peace of mind.

I got back to the hostel that night, feeling nervous and unsure. Imaginary fights battled my mind as i rode back on the bus. I ate dinner, and then went to my bed as if guarding the place. I read for a while, only partially caught in my book, and as 10:30 rolled around, and i was still alone, and i wondered what those thoughts had been all about. I turned off the light and went to bed.

Just after 11pm, the final check in time, the door opened wide, the lights turned on, and a group of people walked inside. I kept my head under the covers, trying to sleep, saying ok i do have roommates, and they will soon be done. the door opened and closed, slamming shut each time, someone stomped their feet, and the voices were both animated and agitated and did not stop, “who is that person?” i heard one say. they left the room, turned out the lights and i got up to take a pee, and fell over several suitcases blocking the bathroom door. I turned on the light and what did i see except bags filled with large bottles of cheap alcohol and high-heeled shoes strewn on the floor. Still i went back to my bed for a while. they came back in one sat on a bed, opened the large bottle and started to joke around. I asked them to be quiet, long after the quiet hours posted on the door, and beside no alcohol allowed in the dorm rooms. One girls said to me its our room and we didn’t expect you here. The office was long closed by that time. We argued back and forth and her friends decided to take the party elsewhere slamming the door hard as they left.

A few hours later, after 1am, the door opened and shut, lights turned off and on, voices were louder, the bottles emptier and i stirred in my bed. Two sat down, drinks in hand and unpacked and poured a drink. i asked them to be quiet. You be quiet the one girl said, i really don’t want you in here. and that set me off . I don’t really remember exactly what transpired except that we ended up in a screaming match. i know i blew, i know i yelled until nothing could be fixed anymore.

The next day i was able to change rooms, to the other that was just the other side of a thin wall, i heard them talking about me, how i was a psychopath and telling all i was crazy and the people in the room i talked to muttered about the noise next door and then the person who screamed aloud and was to be condemned. It had gotten so out of hand.

It sounds like nothing now that i write it, but was one of those moments i carried with me. Did i cause the events to happen because of my thoughts, or had a premonition been granted to me? Was the calm but a temporary reprieve? for the calm and the storm have happened many other times, with much greater implications.

I remember now having the calm and then the internal storm before the journey with my father that would lead me here that time, the journey that left us both ragged and run down. It happened at the end of the journey with Robert, which took us through here. During that last week along the coast i took walks alone, appreciated god’s beauty in the world, felt the clouds lifting from my eyes and the calm returning and caught a glimpse of the devine….and then it all exploded and he was gone. And it happened as well in sierraville, that other place in this mountain range where i spent some time. It was after the Burning Man rush, and i think i had proven my worth, the debates about what i would do and if i were to stay were gone. I felt calm and liked i belonged, but there was still something in the air. One morning i took a walk up the hill behind the baths, and felt a sense of connection come over me, an angel who was there. I hiked to the top of the pools, and the land became eerie and heard another voice, felt a presence of another life, telling me to go away and a shiver ran up my spine. Three days later i left the place. Those stories are long and complicated, but each time i felt a bliss and then a coming storm.

I often wondered if it were a warning of something that was going to occur or if my thoughts created the actions that were to ensue. Still all the times here i had previously been uneasy, off kilter with my mind nervously chattering away. Those moments of clarity that preceded the storms were perhaps a gift to me, a chance to rest, for in those moments i had the answers. the glimpses of the disorder were foreshadowing so that i might prepare how i would respond. In all cases i tried to push the uneasy thoughts away at the same time as feeding on them. not choosing how i would respond, so i was swept away in the storm. But as i write i see how some of the storms were necessary, forcing changes that needed to happen, and sweeping away debris.

And i feel like i have not heard the messages of the stillness or the discord of late. I finish this entry many miles away, and feel like i have made another mistake. A mistake i have made before, a lesson i have not learned and feel that the storm has not yet begun. Or can i trust the bliss, knowing that it will come and go, and listen to all that is being said.

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I went back to Yosemite in the rain. I was not sure if i would go there that day, but i told myself i would, so i went. I slept in late, missed the 8:25 so i did not get there almost until noon. And my journey there, foreshadowed how i would feel upon coming here, but i did not listen, kept to my plans, and now i find myself back in wandering land. 

The patches of snow had returned to the valley floor, and the mountain peaks were white. Only three days later, it was a very different Yosemite than where i had been. The temperature had dropped almost thirty degrees, and rain and hail came in, although i was lucky enough to have missed the snow. The sky showed some blue in the morning, but clouds came in throughout the day, up high, and then down low, hiding some of the peaks away. 

I found myself walking around feeling a bit lost, not too sure of where to go. I walked a bit on the valley floor, headed out into a field to catch a broad view but the path did not take me where i thought, and i just circled around back to the lodge. The mood, was it of the place or me, no longer expansive and shining, but shrouded and dull. I walked by the falls and to the visitors center, it was now beginning to rain. Caught the wonderful film, The Spirit of Yosemite, that captured the essence of the place. I found myself just waiting to catch the bus back down, had come on up and now i was waiting to leave. I went out to Curry Village, thinking i would go to Happy Isles and see the power of the river again, only got as far as a meadow and looked out at the north dome and focused on some waterfalls that weren’t on the map. I got chilled, so wandered a gift store and then went back to the bus. Caught a few glimpse of the spirit, but more often felt lost. It was on the back down driving out of the park, that the wonder again struck me, tall peaks gathering about, and thin stone formations like sentinels. 

While i have a draft of a deeper entry, my vision of Yosemite was not as glad or pure as if i had not returned again after that sunny warm day full of relevations and insight. And i almost had not gone. Had thought of spending another day trying to write at the hostel but i truly felt like i needed to leave that zone behind for it closed in on me. I had stayed at the hostel for two days, trying to write but with little success, so i thought. I look back now and see i came out with much, but it was not what i had planned to write about; and as always not as much. I thought to go to recollect memories, and put my story down to words, and instead my main writing was about those very days at Yosemite. 

That morning i slept late, deep in thought, in that in-between zone where i did not want to climb out of bed, did not want to let the insights go and step out into the active world. I was thinking about life and about my decisions, and that to come back up here. I was to leave that day, not only the yosemite bug, or the national park, but the bay area in general. And i seriously wondered if i were making the right move, and both clarity and panic ran over me. 

That night i had many dreams, but awoke with what i thought was a clear mind. I realized that i had never really tried to stay in San Francisco in all those years, that i just told myself no. i had convinced myself that i could not be done. “one of the most expensive cities in the nation, you will never make it here” I told myself. Maybe it is true, that i saw it clear, that the gloss was off, that it was not to be my home, that i did not need to make it there. The answer i don’t know, and maybe never will, but i did not let go. So i looked at the city through a tourist lens, and my eyes rested on those living in the streets. I awoke that morning and wondered if i were leaving that dream behind, or if it really were time to let it go of the imaginary place i had created in my mind. 

I went down to the main lodge to grab a coffee and finally took a closer look at craigslist, and saw plenty of rooms around $600 in the suburbs of town. I had never really examined it before. It is true during those visits i had no compter and no phone. the latter i had just let go. It is only now i look back an see just how much of me had died. but i hesitated, did i really want to go back there. I had already booked my ticket onwards and made hostel reservations on line. 

It’s true, the choice to come up here was not clear, at least not to come that day – there was a conference, cheap admission that i had thought of going back to in the city instead but rejected it. Still, I looked again at the website for the New Living Conference with speakers on healing and consciousness – it appealed and it pushed me away. But i did not want to return to the downtown hostel, and saw the shortcuts to spirituality and healing gimmicks for sale and something told me no. It was time to go. 

Before turning off the computer, i checked my daily horoscope that i receive by email and this is what it said
When you are faced with a decision alice, you can say “yes”, and commit yourself to something, or say “no” and just walk away. In both cases, you respect your personality and you don’t waste any of your energy. But if you agree to a compromise, you’re getting yourself involved in something that will be more costly to you than you think. You may realize this at the end of your day today, … 

I pondered it all over again and thought of saying no. Check out time was near, so i grabbed my bags to store for the day feeling even less clear than before. When i dropped my bags, I hesitated before buying a ticket for the Yosemite bus. I looked down to the fire pit where a group of 8th graders were running and shouting and acting like the kids they were. They were stuck at the hostel as their bus had broken down. 

I made my way down the hill to the bus stop for quarter past ten. As i got to the road, my mind just opened up to me and i felt like i had emerged for a dark zone. I sat scribbling away and feeling free, and clear about my decision – until all the kids came down the hill to take the YARTS bus. And i knew we would not all get on. 

My clarity gone, i wondered if i should turn back for i really did not know why i was going to the park. But a determination and dark cloud arose in me. i will not be pushed aside, i thought. I was thinking they would have to buy my ticket, for they were without refund. Part of me said be gracious, you have seen it before, go back it will be calm and you can write some more. The bus pulled in and i ran up to the door and got on. 

Once i took my seat, i thought how selfish of me to push my way on through. I almost got off, offered my place but even so there was not room for them all., only 49 seats and other passengers, and my being one person did not make a huge difference, so half got on and half waited for the next bus to come. I felt guilt, wondering why i felt like i must insist, and made my way to Yosemite Park, into the thick mist. And once i got there, i thought, how all changes from day to day, and how that reflects the life that is. And spent my day wandering in the park. It was on the bus ride leaving the park, that i caught a brief glimpse of the gods who live there. 

I went back to the hostel and claimed my bags, and took another bus ride down to Merced. The group of kids got off that bus and i felt like i was meant to go. I spent close to two hours in the train station waiting room, and as i looked at the poor kids who ran around and listen to the spanish conversations, remembering my last long journey and thought i can’t keep travelling no more.  

I sat ouside the station in Merced just before the train arrived and said i can’t do this no more this travel is killing me, And i know i felt that as i carried my lighter pack downhill at the Yosemite Bug. But how many times have i said that before and i find myself still on the road. I watch something that looks like tumbleweed on the sidewalk. That night I left and wonder if i am running away. 

I have returned to another zone, of grey and clouds and rain. I find myself returning to a place, that i once had left behind, and not truly that clear on what exactly brought me here. And i think, how that day in the park had been a warning to me. For i feel that the magic has worn off. 

I sit here another hostel bed, asked myself what if i had not come. But it is another what if that i will not know. I just have to move forward again and see how decisions came to me. For after all, i grew in that last return to San Francisco, and part of me ended up not wanting to leave the place where i had not really wanted to come. And part of me knows that if i had gone to sacramento, that (in)decision that clung onto me, that i just would have ended up coming up here anyways. So i must say yes to my decisions, something brought me here, although part of me feels like i have made a relapse to a dark zone in the rain. I must move forwards, not let the gloom penetrate, and write my way through this place and all the memories and energies that are contained here and emerge on the other side. 

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