A few months ago I returned from a two month period I spent in the middle of nowhere, in Mississippi, in our family cabin. I say "family" cabin but it's more of a project that my dad and I have been working on over the last two years just to have a place to go when we need to get away. Some family have come by. But mostly just my dad and I.
It was previously a wood working shop owned by my granddad, it sits on a hill overlooking a pine plantation, a pond, and a hundred year old oak tree. After my granddad passed away, my dad and I started converting this shop into a cabin so that we would have a place to stay when we went hunting.
Over the past hunting season, 2009-2010, I was able to go and spend a couple of months there, alone, with nothing to keep me company except the quiet, and the wild. An effort to venture into a much needed transition from 28 year old "man-child" into a full blown man. I figured that as it stood, I was still afraid to be out in the wilderness alone, afraid of the dark, afraid to walk in the woods in the dark to a hunting stand, to harvest a deer and skin it by myself, and that at some point a boy must cross the threshold into manhood, fears dying, and this would be a great chance to do that.
The ultimate test in my mind was to harvest a deer, when I was ready, trail it through the woods, walk up to it and poke it to make sure it was dead, and then drag it off and skin it. I know that might sound a bit barbaric to some reading this...blame it on survival of the fittest.
The threshold to cross would actually be walking up to this animal where one of two things is going to happen: 1. Nothing and 2. It wouldn't be dead.
I won't say that I passed the test gracefully, but... I did pass my test.
During my stay I was able to do some soul searching, connect with nature, record some crazy acoustic music, read several good books and gain some valuable spiritual insight, if only of value to myself. And that, is how this blog has appeared.