Iím really tired. My sleep has been bad for the past couple of weeks.

I donít get this weird American obsession with achievement. Even when a person is in desperate need of a break, thereís really no such thing. Thereís nothing built into our culture that allows a person to take time when she needs it. Vacations must be planned months in advance, and they must never be wasted at home, and God forbid that you actually travel alone.

The truth is; Iím really pissed off. I think itís generally low-level anger at the whole world for being an unfair and crappy place.

Lately, Iíve been thinking, I wish I would have been a dancer. I mean, a real dancer, not someone who takes up dancing in her early-to-mid 30ís. I could be living in Manhattan, struggling along with all the other people in the performing arts, waiting tables, and possessing amazing skill and receiving no recognition for it.

I donít know if Iím making any sense. I guess Iím pretty tired. That doesnít mean the thought didnít cross my mind when I wasnít tired.

Iím beginning to think that the worst curse in this world is the ability to acquire stuff, and to have it. Long ago, when I was in college, a friend said to me, ďIím not sure I really want to be financially successful. It seems like the more money you have, the more you worry about it.Ē She talked about how her parents had plenty of money, but conserving it and growing it completely consumed their lives.

The less I have, the happier I am. Part of it comes from having grown up with nothing. Stuff makes me uncomfortable. Having stuff means you have something to lose.

Whatís the point of it, anyway?

So, this weekend, weíre going to WV and KY, in both cases to climb via ferrata. This trip is going to be hard on me. Last Spring, I had the most difficult couple of weeks, ever, when I went to WV to climb this thing, only to immediately launch into a tough backpacking trip, only to go home the following weekend and start on skydiving lessons. A couple of weeks later, I jumped out of an airplane.

Iím not a thrill seeker. However, the skydiving did fall under the ďthings I want to try, somedayĒ category. I think that when I was young, that was the scariest thing I could ever think of doing, and I wondered how I would handle the scariest thing that could ever happen to me.

Personally, I thought the via ferrata was scarier.

Jumping out of a plane was definitely the most non-intuitive thing Iíve ever done. Itís a different experience to climb out onto the wing of a flying airplane with every single cell in your body screaming, ďWHAT THE %^&*^&*! ARE YOU DOING?!?!?!?! GET BACK INTO THE $@^&$&*-ING PLANE!!!Ē

And, then to let go.

You go from chaos to instant peace, when the parachute opens and you see sky, sky, sky and more sky.

Anyway, Iím not doing that this weekend. Iím doing the other thing.
A couple of weeks ago, I was talking to a woman who has done the WV via ferrata twice. She told me that the first time, she cried through the whole thing. She went back a second time and didnít cry, it was an awesome experience.

What will my experience be the second time? I didnít cry the first time. I was scared out of my mind. I didnít think it was an awesome experience, either. It was more like, it happened, and I survived.

Iím making it sound as though Iím about to be launched into space. Itís not really THAT bad. Itís bad enough where any normal person should be scared, yes. Itís not so bad that a person is likely to die or get hurt.

I canít say why Iím going back. Itís not total peer pressure. I do want to try it again to see how I react this time. I donít necessarily want to try it again this weekend, but that is the weekend weíre going.

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Thursday, May. 21, 2009 at 6:17 PM