Moai on Easter Island

Moai on Easter Island

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Leaving the Sierra, for....somewhere

Again sitting in LAX.  I do a lot of sitting in LAX these days.  It is such a terrible airport; there is nothing in here.  And flying in out of here is just such a crazy [terrible] view.

Mono Lake at night
After taking off from Mammoth Lakes today I got a great aerial view of almost every place where I have stepped foot in the last month.  Such a fitting departure for me—all the while having MORE paperwork for Antarctica in my lap.  

I sat in the sun on the porch in June Lake this afternoon thinking about “home.” For the last month this place has felt like home.  I felt a relief every time I’d pull back into the driveway; even if it was only after coming five minutes back from the grocery store. 

Boardwalk down to Mono Lake

Then I started thinking about what home is to me these days.  I always call Missoula home.  But when I go back to Whitehall I call that home.  When I get off Denali I call the Mountain Trip house in Anchorage home.  When I got off the Ice Cap in Patagonia I called the place in Coyhaique home.  Most recently it was this place at the end of Garnet Street in June Lake, CA.

Looking down on our house in June Lake From Carson Peak

It has been three and half years since I have spent more than three months in one place.  I’ve never thought of that as much of a big of a deal, but tonight I put down on paper all the places I’ve been to in the last 4 years. The frequency of travel actually blew me away.  The weight of the question “where are you off to next?” made more sense to me now than ever.  I know I haven’t been able to stay in one place lately (for one reason or another). But I truly just now realized the extent of that.  Wow.  Wow, is really all I can say.
Mono Lake between moonset and sunrise

I’m supposed to spend 4.5 months at McMurdo Station in Antarctica.  What a long amount of time for me to be in one place now.  I will call that town of 1200 people on the Ice my home.  “Home.”

Initially in June Lake I tried to meet some people.  I met some great people, just not my kind of people.  Not the kid of people I know from Montana.  Yes, I know there are different types of people in different places.  I didn’t make any effort at all to build a friendship with anyone that I met though.  After things with Antarctica started working out I knew my time there was limited.  I didn’t want to build relationships that I would only leave yet again.  I really only wanted to leave the mountains behind.

Essentially I turned my time in June Lake into time in any other town I happened to get gas in during my travels. I was just passing through.
Owl in Flight
I have truly enjoyed my last month in California though.  I have seen some places that I’ve always wanted to see and have taken some of the best photos of my life.  I’ve even taken initiative to get these photos out to the world and have gotten some of them published in local CA papers and magazines.  But I guess it is time to board another plane. 

A plane that could go anywhere in the world.  A plane with hundreds of unknown people-all going to the same place, sorta.  But in this case I still have three flights to go before I actually get back to MT.  I could be a world away.  Think of the places that you could go from where you are right now in only three flights.  Really anywhere on earth. Anywhere on earth is only three flights away.

Looking down on Yosemite Valley

view of the Cables of Half Dome

Looking into the Sierra from Carson Peak

June Lake area from just behind my house

Mono Lake

1 comment:

  1. Ben I have really been loving your blog. You should know that you are an inspiration to people who want to travel and have your lifestyle. Thanks!