Life is settling down a bit here in my end of the beautiful Rocky Mountains. I’ve moved in with my gf, Julie, and – despite my mess – things are mellow and very fun thus far. I’m still searching for a new bachelor-pad in which to write the great manifesto which shall be my ph.d. thesis. But until that place finds me (or I choose one of the many places I’ve seen recently) I will be happily, and with much gratitude, staying right here at Julie’s.
Moving here, in with a girlfriend and in a cookie-cutter, impersonal apartment complex amidst suburban sprawl, definitely raised many worries for me given my recent time just outside of D.C. But I’ve been pleasantly surprised by the people around here (not at all pretentious like many of those in the “climbing the corporate/gov’t ladder” mentality of D.C.). And we have great views (chalk that up to Missoula and having a corner apartment).
Of course it helps immensely that Julie is sane (at least that’s what I tell her). Just kidding. She’s great. And most of the people I’ve lived with have been great and nearly all of the women I’ve dated have been great as well. Yet as my D.C. experience taught me: you’ve gotta be very careful who you shack up with.
In any case, being at Julie’s, 5 days and counting, has been wonderful. I have mostly behaved myself (above-mentioned mess and a bit of post-move moodiness aside) and all is well. And now I search on for the ideal Missoula pad, for what I had years ago on 5th and Walnut so close to the center of town but so quiet still. Do I move further from town, live more cheaply and enjoy the woods and solitude? Do I pay more for a small, sunny abode in the heart of downtown? Do I go in on a great house with a fellow philosophy friend and my Pali study-mate? I’m not good with such decisions.
As I remarked to Julie on the way home from a potluck tonight, “my father once had an impossible decision to make, to buy a car he didn’t really need for a great deal or to let it go… He simply couldn’t decide. Finally, he simply allowed my sister to toss a coin: heads he buys, tails he doesn’t. It was heads. He bought it. It sat in front of our home for several months before he gave the car to my aunt who, with a growing family, was incredibly grateful for the gift.” So, I thought, perhaps I should just toss a coin – heads I take a cute little studio, in the woods (sort of) at a great price and not far from town, tails I keep looking.
Results from that to come.
In the meantime, here are some photos from my recent trip home with Julie as we encountered amazing skies and an intense -often double- rainbow:
* more photos available here
Don’t hold too tightly to your conceptions of what is, or what should be. Life has a way of throwing new difficulties – and new opportunities – your way. Be true to yourself. Know yourself. This is not an easy task, but knowing who you are is the greatest gift you could ever give yourself or to the world.
Do I want to live in isolation – better to write and focus my thoughts? Do I want to live in the hub of town – better to enjoy Missoula’s farmer’s market and so much more?
In truth I do not know. I don’t know what I want most out of the next year or so of my life. As such these are great questions. Perhaps it doesn’t matter. Life will give me challenges and new opportunities at both. Perhaps it really should be up to a coin toss or some other act of fate.
The most important thing for me now should not be comfort or enjoyment or community practices – it should be finishing my ph.d. work. In truth that is the path to teaching, where I can give back to the next generation of curious young minds. What I need best is solitude and space where I can work freely – messily and with abandon – where time can fly and temptations are far away.
Heads, I take the cute studio in the woods.