I think I like to believe that noodling around on my ukulele and on that cigar box guitar I impulsively bought last summer at a random ATL festival has made me a better guitar player. I'll never be very good and I'm cool with that. Whatever dreams I ever had of rock stardom are a distant (if [still!] oft revisited) memory. I do still, however find myself 'learning' songs with chords I'm not familiar with...no realistic chance of successful execution, but always with the same prideful arrogance with which I pursue / have always pursued all meaningful / pointless endeavors. I'm okay with that. For years I thought there was some magic chord progression I would have to hit to be a 'good' guitarist....it's finally dawned on me that I'll never hit those changes. That's just not me...I wasn't born to be a guitar player in the classic sense - in any conventional sense if I'm honest. Truth is, I don't love it enough to dedicate the time it would take to be considered a 'good' guitar player. It's a time killer and I DO love killing time so I'm cool with whatever that says about me. The benchmark, for the record, for me at least is Tunnel of Love by Dire Straits. Mark Knopfler is an unequaled / unexpected freak in my estimation and it's borderline obscene to think that I could ever match the natural talent of a certified virtuoso but everybody has to have a dream, right?
This wasn't the first 'moment of clarity' I experienced today but it is as significant as (if not more so) anything else, considering that some version of its implied internal dialogue has bounced around my conscious / subconscious aquarium since spring but has remained unarticulated until right now in this eternally random hotel. It hints at the root cause of my near-manic need to solo-vacate the premises for an ever-increasing length of time every year. What is the 'root-cause' you might be asking? If you can allow yourself to be honest with yourself (myself) for a second, you already know - there simply isn't enough time to think about all of the things.
Prior to even boarding my exquisite / uneventful flight to Denver this morning, I felt unprepared - knowing full well that if I'm anything, I'm 'prepared' on the regular . It wasn't that I hadn't held the mail etc., it was that I hadn't 'held' my brain. Who does that?! I hadn't allowed myself margin enough to internalize what it might mean to see Chimney Rock with my own eyes. As with all other destinations on this installment of my self-diagnosed / self-medicated vacation, it was an unknown. It / they exist(ed) simply and solely as 'stars' on my Google Map for as long as it / they have been a recognizable thing. As I flitted along the clouds hovering effortlessly above the patchwork of greens and grays that is the American heartland this AM (yester now), I realized that I hadn't done my homework.
I was sad admitting to myself that I had neglected to prepare my mind but how does one even do that? Is that a thing? Could I / should I mentally clear myself to the point that I could fully appreciate this magnificent geological monolith prior to? After this afternoon's drive, the answer is an unequivocal no. I cannot, and my ineffective Instagram pics do not / cannot / will not ever give / show / intimate a single molecule of insight as to how I felt when I first saw this ancient stone skyscraper rising from the prairie floor. It was cool earlier to be back in Denver for a bit and we all know how attached to prairie dogs I am, but that wasn't the thing. Cheyenne was something but I don't think I fully settled into what this road trip might possess until I saw Chimney Rock - with my own two hands. It's only been a minute (tick,tick,tick) but I dig this vacation thus far. You should to. The hell of it is, CR was a subtle (honestly expected / unexpected) letdown - there are bigger fish in my bear trap.
Having finally qualified for vaca status (by my singular measure alone), I was able to get back to the business at hand. That 'business' never manifests itself in the same way but it's always exactly what I was wholly prepared / unprepared to accept / experience. For instance, I had NO idea that I would be as taken as I was with 'Carhenge' but there were certainly some expectations. Maybe it's that 'expectation' that's the issue? Maybe it's as simple as not knowing what a sunset will look like in a place until you get to that place and see said sun set in that place that makes one desperately seek it. You can't know what purple means to nature until nature shows you what it means to her.
I live on / in eight lanes of traffic. Everyday. Coming and going. I want to know what purple looks like...I want to know what purple means.
I haven't written publicly in some time now (and I'm sure you get that by how whatever this piece is) but I feel as though this lucidity (however fleeting and incomprehensible it may in all reality be) should express itself. Verbally. Unedited. It's not that I have discovered the 'answers' or whatever, it's that I have found a vehicle that I know how to drive through that which I might.
My clock is a 24-hour click-click-boom. It always has been and it always will be. It's ALWAYS go time.