...hiking at high elevations reminds me of advice given to people who get bored following the breath in meditation...
Take the thumb and first finger of either hand, clamp them tightly over your nose, keep your mouth closed, and notice how long it takes before your breathing becomes very interesting to you!
...ten years or so ago, was sitting on a rocky beach in Maine reading To the Lighthouse, a novel in which the most commonplace situations are described with stunning color and intensity...making for a beautiful reading experience, though it made me think that, if Virginia Woolf actually experienced passing moments of life like that, without any kind of off-switch...as, I suspect, she did...it’s not hard to to understand why she filled her pockets with rocks and took that last fateful walk into the pond...
There is shadow under this red rock,
(Come in under the shadow of this red rock),
And I will show you something different from either
Your shadow at morning striding behind you
Or your shadow at evening rising to meet you;
I will show you fear in a handful of dust.
...maybe twenty years ago, was backpacking in the Weminuche Wilderness in southern Colorado, just north of Durango, and, one afternoon, was in kind of an...ummm...ahem...altered state....things got kind of intense...way too much happening in mountains or groves of trees or the sky to keep looking at them....so, decided to simplify things....told myself I’m just gonna look at this rock here...nothin’ too intense or scary, there.....except there was...once I bothered to see...
Look: the sun gods, the gods
of fire, dawn, sky, wind, storm,
wonders that no mortal has ever
...boredom, it occurs to me, is really a defense mechanism...guarding our eyes from the truly dazzling nature of everything around us...