A Quest for What’s Real

Today, as I was getting my hair done, ...rare, I know... my hair dresser, a close friend of mine, asked if I had heard from a certain old mutual acquaintance of ours that had lost touch with me. I told her I hadn’t, “I don’t keep up with anyone any more unless they’re a genuine close friend of mine.”

“Yeah,” she said, “I know. I forget you’re not on Facbook. Let me show you some of her recent pictures so you can see how she is doing.” My hairdresser grabbed her phone to show me said acquaintances’ Facebook page, “Browse all you want!” she said.

I began to look up and down this old friend’s page. Instantly I felt somewhat disappointed with the lack of anything meaningful. It was just a page littered with thread after thread of ridiculous amounts of useless selfish banter, shout outs to random people about what she had accomplished during the day, running brags, mileage quotes, phony impersonal interactions, cockiness, and the utmost political correctness to appease the masses. I was nauseated.

You know, I thought, I remember why I stopped talking to this girl. Literally every single moment we had spent together was spent with her texting and facebooking and paying absolutely zero attention to me or anything I had to say. Seriously. Even while running! I mean, I didn’t even know people could text while running down the side of the road! What a waste of time and energy!

I handed the phone back, and we moved on with the conversation. Yet the remainder of the day, those dumb Facebook threads stuck out in my mind….

I guess it just pissed me off. Why? Well. I’ll tell you why.

Because I’m so sick of fake. And I’ve been sick of fake for so terribly long. It disappoints me! It’s everywhere. Absolutely everywhere you look. Fake people, fake lives, fake conversations, fake food, …shoot…. there’s even fake runners. Trust me, its possible. And not only does fake surround, but just cheap trash. Its rare to find quality -I dunno- quality ANYTHING. Nothing is held sacred any more… it feels sometimes like I’m surrounded by a bunch of garbage. Fake, cheap, garbage…So where the heck is the trash man?

It’s almost as a vicious disease has attacked life at the very core. And being the individual that I crave to be, I want no part in it. I won’t drown in it. I will always fight my way to the surface.

My quest for real has taken me down multiple paths in life, all of which have an underlying theme: value, depth, and meaning. Of course I am still traveling down most of these roads, as I always will be, but they have undoubtedly led me to create a solid base to build my life and worldview on. The more I grow, the more I learn to avoid the things that contain no ability to satisfy me in the overall picture, all while carving time for the things that do.

Enter the Grand Canyon Trip with Amber:

3am Skype chatting with Amber

Thankfully, I have been blessed with a few like minded individuals in my life. These women understand me, connect with me, support me, and love me as I do them. As most of you know, in just a few days, one of these cool chicks, Amber, will be heading out to the Grand Canyon with me. We have no plans made other than running the entire canyon rim to rim and back again and then some, swimming in Havasu falls, sleeping under the stars, laughing our heads off, and pouring our hearts out. With temps said to be dropping deep into the 20’s while we camp, and our bodies likely ravaged from days of running, we are looking forward to embracing the challenges together to grow and bond in a special way.

I am so thankful to have another opportunity to chase down “real” with a soul mate of mine!

Last year during an Amber visit from RI. We ran over 8 hours for no reason at all on a hot summer day, and had the time of our lives.

This canyon running adventure- It’s not about hitting a certain time, knocking off any specific mileage, breaking a record, or explaining ourselves to the world. It’s about actually living life.. about growing an even deeper friendship, embracing the unexpected, and interacting with God’s creation. ... which all basically sounds like an advertisement for your kid’s summer camp… but it’s true! I just want real. It’s all I’ve ever wanted! And I’m not sitting around waiting for it to happen! So where is real?? Well I know for sure it’s not on Facebook, it’s not found in breeding phony connections, or depending on a constant flow of instant gratification! It’s not in anything you don’t have to work for.

.. but this trip- real is all around- in the hours spent in pain climbing out of the canyon, the nights spent shivering through cold, and the wee hours of the night spent laughing like little girls, ….all while putting all of life’s more “important things” on hold.

I decided long ago to simply let go of all of the fake nonsense, and I am happy I did. I dove into the deep rushing rivers of life, far over my head, and with no hesitation. I will always continue to do so in some way shape or form. It’s a forever type of quest. And you know, I definitely can’t see the outcome of my life- but I already know this- it was worth jumping in.

See you in the canyon, Amber!:)

_____________________________

Up next- packing post and a gear list. I’ll try to keep it interesting;)

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