Welcome, ladies and gentlemen, to the real world.
This notion has been a sort of propaganda tactic used by society for generations. They raise them young, starting children out on minor tasks and drills such as being awarded a small allowance, assigned weekly chores or allowed to ride their bike to school. Teachers shape and bend these early minds to ensure they will function in society successfully; algebra and math, history, economics, and english classes are all taught from an early age to prepare kids for adulthood. College claims to take this notion a step further, teaching you the necessary skills and abilities to not only become a functioning member of society but an active contributor to it. Universities whisk you away with their illustrious images of fame and fortune and a steady paycheck, a 30-year fixed rate mortgage, 2.5 children, a benefits package and robust retirement fund. But before long they send you on your way with a very nice looking piece of paper and a firm hand shake. Yes indeed, welcome to the real world.
Life always seems to have this illusion of building up to some sort of climax, some pivotal point in the time and space continuum when the planets align just right and the training that has been engrained into your mind for so many countless years finally sets in, this so called reality, this intangible force, this unimaginable ideal. Immediately you become one with it, and it of you, and so it is. I have often imagined what that moment will be like. I wonder if I will even notice. It quite possibly has already taken place. Or perhaps it has always been so? What a tragic and anti-climactic ending that would turn out to be, to learn that the life and fantasy you have been seeking for the majority of your existence on this earth has been all around you this entire time. What a shame that would be. Welcome my friend to the real world.
The ultimate aim of the Canyon Chronicles is to showcase the immense beauty of the natural world, which is in my opinion as close to reality as one can possibly get. As well, I hope that the photos, writings, ramblings and stories help to foster a deeper appreciation and understand of the wilderness that the majority of the population is terrified of. The natural world is not a place full of danger and peril. The thieves and vultures and wolves at your back that are often associated with the wild and untamed backcountry are, in an incredible twist of irony, more commonly found in the city and people you are currently surrounded by. I also aim to challenge you to think outside of the metaphorical box. Question yourself. Step out of your comfort zone. Push your limits. Get outside. Ramble a bit. Wander around. Stay for a while. As I have said so many times before, you would be amazed what you can find when you aren’t looking for anything at all. This is a beautiful world filled with beautiful people. Go enjoy it.