Life is like a pebble stone road. For most of us at least, driving the highway of life is not a smooth couch ride nor is it a glamorous jet set life at the cocktail bar. Still every one of us strive for the same. Freedom. Freedom to exist with in our own boundaries of the sheltered life we like to build. Freedom with in the walls of the fort we build around us and our family. We like to think that any one, stepping out side these walls of security must be mad, because outside of our circle there is no shelter and only danger.
There are as many wolfs on the road as there are coyotes. Wolfs like it when we herd up like sheep and live with in the borders of our own minds fenced valley, thinking that we are safe. Its easier to pluck out a stray victim that does not follow the herd. Its easier for those that decide they are the born leaders to send out individuals to be picked up by the wolfs.
I did not feel like a stray sheep, more like a curious sheep wanting to see what was behind all those fences I was told existed but I did not see. Was it as bad as every one said. Was the path just a mud road filled with highway hijackers, wolfs and coyotes waiting for a pray to catch and if so where they inside or outside the fences.
In my mind my goal was simple. I wanted to proof the oracle wrong. I wanted to proof that Nick Cave was wrong when he said people are no good. I wanted to proof that kindness of strangers really existed and that we all are strangers as soon as we step outside our comfort zone and open up our minds to others. Most of all I wanted to proof to my self that I still loved photography and could connect to the world through my images.
I wanted to see the poetic aspect of life, probably somewhat romanticized by my mind, and hoped to show to other sheep's that there are more of us out there than we think and despite the color of our valley we are not all that different or evil. It is easy to put such an agenda into some religious costume and ask you to hang it on your shoulders as a frock, cowering you from the rainfall of bad sheep thoughts, but as easily does the coat tear when you see the Dr. Jekyll and MR. Hide effect of straight and narrow believe.
There was no shortage of wolfs out there trying to shut our minds down and lock us in with their flock of control. Neither was there a shortage of self assigned oracles telling us how dangerous it would be to step out side the boundaries of our own mind. We had barely begun telling other sheep's about our mission when we started getting mind threats. You will be killed on the first day in Texas the Icelandic oracles said. You will never survive the dreadful coast of Louisiana the oracle in Texas told us. You will never survive Mexico the oracle in California told us.
We met the wolfs. We had encounters with the Hyenas and we drank with the coyotes but the biggest pleasure did we have with the sheep's we found along the road not to mention the wandering sheep's that had hit the road despite the bright future that had been planed for them by the imaginary borders of their own society. Just like us.
We did learn that the lucky one of us have the pebbles stone road to march down, the unlucky one a mud slide. Some think they have the smooth highway. We did learn there is no one highway to take and even though its like the asphalted sofa couch road of the Texas plains it does not necessarily lead you in the right direction. You might even reach the end of the road, you think, only to then find you have to back up a little to find the right sidetrack to further your journey.
After our travel through out the USA and Canada i felt like we had gone no where. Driven in circle like a sun blinded sheep. And sure I was a blind sheep. Because I did not see what I had been doing. I did not see what I was doing because I was blinded by the thoughts of what I should have been doing. I was still caved by herd mind.
It was not until a year after the trip that I realized I had been on the right track all the time but I had been a diesel train with to many oracles as my passengers. In USA I did not do what I set out to do, simply because I set out to absolutely nothing but go with the flow and going with the flow is hard to figure out in the end if what flow you are going with is not clear at the start. But this flow led to USA My WAY
This going with the flow, turned out not to be the end but the beginning. In fact a step back to the pebble stone highway I started on many years ago, before I got sidetracked by herd-ism of sheep talk. Sheep's wanting me to stay in their flock and not wander outside of my valley. Wolfs in sheep skin not wanting me to roam free out onto the plain because they had found a crack in the sheep wall to slip through. And they wanted me as snack. They where no longer outside and in the mountains to hunt, the have moved inside our fences to hunt.
For this reason it could easily been seen as a religious experience that I started a new area of my photography, right there on the square in front of the small church in San Javier in Baja California in Mexico. Once again it seemed that some thing new had begun with in the valley of the church. Looking back the pebble stone road I now see that this was not a new road. Only a new side road, leading me back to my main road. The road I started on when I took up the interest in photography.
Still traveling the pebble stone road, being the wandering sheep I am, I still do not believe. That is, I still do not believe in any one thing. I believe that there is some thing more to this life than just to eat and be eaten and there is more to life than meets the eye. Things that we can not explain and maybe should not explain. I believe there are some good sheep's out there and there are some wolfs in sheep skin. But the good sheep's outnumber the wolfs by far. I believe this trip and events afterwards has had a huge impact on my life and vision and cleared for me what road I want to head down with my photography and poetry.
Most of all though I believe in life.