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“The only man who makes no mistakes is the man who never does anything.”
~Teddy Roosevelt

“I think I’m about ready to get out of here again.” “It’s about time. I figured I’d been hearing that six or seven months ago.” “I just got to go.” “I know; it’s who you are, and who you’ll always be.” “Mom, I’m 32 years old.” “So what. You think you’re dad wouldn’t go with you if he could? You get it honest and never let anyone tell you different.”

“If you get a call today about a reference do me right. It’s a job in Montana.” “I’ll do it. Ramble on brother. I love ya.”

“Montana huh? A new chapter begins. Beautiful country up there; watch out for bears they are kind of like women if you make them mad they bite.”

“You caught me just in time. Why? I ain’t seen you in almost two years; you leaving again? What the hell are you even still doing here?” “I’m, heading to Montana in May.” “Montana? You always wanted to go to Alaska, even in high school, you’re getting closer.” “Yeah, time to go.” “Ramblin’ man.”

“I think it takes one hell of a man to leave a place where he has what he wants so someone else can figure things out.” “You know I was supposed to go to work at the Grand Canyon 14 years ago and I let an almost 6 foot tall brunette in a Catholic School girl skirt talk me out of it.” “What happened?” “She left two months later.” “Well I didn’t try and talk you out of it.” “I know. And that makes me smile.”

“You’re boring. You never do anything. You ought to just join a monastery.” “I stayed in a monastery once.”

And as a side note finishing up those recent conversations, I almost joined one this time around.

I’ve never been to Montana and I’ve always wanted to go. So I’m going to go. I am 32 years old after all; no need to waste time. I’m going to go work in one of the most beautiful places in the world. I’m going to wake up every day for four months and walk outside to see mountains, crystal clear lakes, green forests, real forests, I’ll have trout fishing outside my back door and when I look out the window of the little shop I’ll be managing I’ll be able to see big horn sheep and bears.


I bet there is some old bear that has been languishing under the influence of hibernation induced dreams of what it would be like to run across a too skinny guy who has been languishing under the influence of wanderlust influenced dreams of seeing a bear out his back door.

I ain’t scared to start over. Never have been. I’ll be starting over at the end of May and I’ll be starting over again sometime around November this year. I’m looking forward to it. People tell me I run away from my problems. The only problem I have is these four walls and waking up to a damn IHOP sitting outside my back door. Best way to fix that is to change my location. My reasons are many and complex. They are also singular and simple.

“I’m a walking contradiction.” “You’re a bearable difficulty.”

I love that.

Who says a man has to settle down at a certain time in his life? Who says I haven’t already settled down? Come may 28th I’ll be drinking a beer while looking out over this.


That’s where I’ll be working. That’s my backyard, those mountains, and that lake, that’s my front yard.
I’ll get to put four or five new states visited under my belt on the way there and add one more to the list of “lived” in. I think dad is going to drive up with me. He is as excited as I am about the whole thing. He’s giving me dates when he can go and when he needs to be back. “We’ve got to go to the Going-to-the-Sun Road”


“Okay dad, settle down.”

Mom laughs and smiles at me. “He really wants to go. I told you he’d be jealous. I hope you can take him.” “I’ll try my best.”

More later. I’ve got a date to go eat some fried chicken livers and I need to put some clean drawers on.


“Wandering re-establishes the original harmony which once existed between man and the universe.”
~Anatole France

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Comment by Jim on March 21, 2009 at 10:23pm
Jon!!! lol....I was trying to think of a good response but you said it so well. Let's hope Kevin finds his nirvana, or at least a place to have some positive life experiences.
Comment by Jon Tilley on March 19, 2009 at 3:55pm
God, that's bleak. I think a handful of fairies and a unicorn died when you posted that.
Comment by Ann Carr on March 18, 2009 at 5:51pm
That is a very special place and one I spent many off hours just being. Enjoy your time there even if you are 32 years old, because one day, you will be old, very old and memories are needed to keep you alive at that time.
Comment by Jon Tilley on March 16, 2009 at 10:12am
Will do, Tim.
Comment by Tim on March 15, 2009 at 10:52pm
ya, what he said. ;-) man, we are sooo crazy huh? to think we are so special we can just walk away from a "real job" to go on a vacation for a undetermined amount of time.

May cant come soon enough for me! maybe ill run into you me one of those long islands!
Comment by Jon Tilley on March 15, 2009 at 7:06pm
Preach on, brother! I'm 31 and will be catching trout and drinking home-made long island iced teas on the beach of Lake MacDonald in a couple of months. Damn, what a terrible way to live, huh? And I don't run away from anything, I run TO life. Take that cubicle and and shove it.

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