Return to the MountainsApril 8, 2005
When I'm standing on top of a mountain by myself, I'm not thinking about anything. I'm not concerned about money, or career objectives. I'm not writing a new song, or planning a new recording project. I'm not obsessing about my worth as a father or a husband. I'm not analyzing, quantifying, criticizing or maginalizing. When I'm there, I'm simply there and there is no need for anything more than that moment.
There is nothing more important than the urgency and freedom of the wind coming across the top of a mountain. There is nothing more comforting than the first rays of the sun breaking through the clouds and shadow of dawn. There is nothing more peaceful than the silence that surrounds me.
If I could find some way to carry that feeling of peace and freedom back into the life that I live everyday, I would be a very lucky man. It is very hard to remember how simple everything ultimately is when you are so far removed from the earth and its rhythms.
I took these picture over the last few days on our vacation to the mountains of North Carolina near Max Patch. In some small way, having these images helps to remind me of what it feels like to be there. I spent a lot of time outside, trying to soak it all into some deep reservoir of memory that I can tap into when things get tough.
Everytime we make the drive back from the mountains, Catherine and I talk about moving back there. Speculating on how we could make a go of it, but with each mile we get closer to Atlanta, the talk seems more and more fanciful and more the stuff of dreams that you find harder and harder to remember as the day wears on. We talk about growing old there -- in some small cabin on the top of a mountain. Maybe we will see it happen.
Until then, we have these temporary excursions and the images to remind us of where home is, no matter where we are.