People, Places, and Purpose. Today was spent reaching out to the people who, in no small sense of the word, I care about. These are the people that I often think about, and fondly of. This is also the community I have lifted myself from to achieve this goal of walking the Silk Road. The basic idea of "People, Places, and Purpose" is that by achieving these three things in your life you're living pretty damn well. I would not be able to walk over 10,000 km with two people I did not care for; Pat and Timb have become my people that I interact and share everything with for almost 100 days now. It's pretty damn lucky that we get along so well. Luck and an understanding that this shit ain't going to work if we don't get along.
But today was not spent talking with my two walking buddies, no, it was spent calling family and friends from all over the world to hear how they are doing and to not let the connections I have dwindle away because I’m not there. Relationships are like fires, and if you don’t tend to your fire it will go out. My family and friends have always shined light for me and helped me navigate down the path of who I am and what I want out of life.
We started walking today at 08:45 and I started with calling my humans back in America, the only convenient time to reach people on the other side of the world. I was able to talk all morning with these people. In the afternoon, I switched to the community I have here in China and talked on the phone for the rest of the day.
How amazing is it that we can talk to each other on other sides of the world almost instantly!? It’s a double-edged sword in a sense that I have spent a large portion of my adult existence searching and exploring in places that have no reception. Viewing these places as somewhere in the world that’s rare and shouldn’t be changed at all. Protect them from the cell towers and wifi connection that is woven into every other area that people go to these days. This idealism was something that was with me from the start of the trip and something I anticipated reaching as we walked the Silk Road, but now, 95 days in and not a day without cell reception, it has been incredibly enjoyable to be able to call my dad whenever I want to, or a high school buddy I haven’t talk to in a while. I definitely have plenty if time to talk as I walk and to rekindle and stoke the fires of my relationships.
Distance: 35 km
Total: 1544 km
End: Somewhere between Qingshui (清水) and JiuQuan (酒泉) - Camping
Written by Paul