Wednesday, September 22, 2010

What Dreams May Come



The second half of the summer has been blissful and hazy. I have enjoyed just about every moment of it, but have sometimes felt like I was watching the experience through another man’s eyes. I am only about 80% sure I am awake right now. There is a 20% chance I am in the midst of a dream.

In July I went backpacking around the Maroon Bells with my friend Leo. Dreams in Technicolor.


I hung around Boulder for a couple weeks. I have little memory of what happened at the beginning of August. I think I went to The Great Indoors two or three times.

I went backpacking in the Sangre de Cristo with my friends Jeremy, Reid, and Truman. The first day we listened to Metallica while driving up a chunk of the legendary Lake Como Jeep Road and hiked to the lake. The second day we climbed Little Bear Peak, the most dangerous Fourteener I have ascended.

When we got back to camp, helicopters were flying up the valley like it was a war zone. We had no idea what was going on.

Eventually we learned an epileptic climber had dislocated her shoulder high on Ellingwood Peak. Jeremy and Reid went up the basin in the middle of the night in a driving rain and lightning storm to help with the rescue. The misery they and the volunteer rescue team went through that ferocious night is hard to fathom, though it was nothing compared to that of the victim.

The next morning Truman and I hiked up the valley and helped the rescue team down the last mile or so.

They were cold, hungry, disheveled, exhausted, disgusted by the victim’s ceaseless negativity. But one young man in a crisp Marmot jacket was fresh and chipper, guiding the team and cracking jokes like they had just gotten out of bed. Some have a fire that cannot be extinguished.

Truman and I went back up the basin after the rescue helicopter took off for Pueblo,

and we climbed Blanca and Ellingwood Peaks.

I think I played some poker in August. It doesn’t seem to matter as much as the softball games we play twice a week.

I went backpacking with my dad in the Zirkel Wilderness. We saw a few bowhunters and no one else. He is so protective of the solitude, he told me not to blog the name of the lakes we went to.

On Labor Day a massive wildfire started just west of Boulder. Thouands of homes were evacuated. 170 were destroyed. The city itself was briefly threatened.


A plume of smoke, sometimes stretching all the way to Kansas, has been blowing east across the city.

Blue skies have turned brown. It has been spectacular, strange, disconcerting. The fire hasn’t felt real.

One night I drove to Louisville, Colorado to see the summer’s biggest blockbuster, Inception.

I went alone. My car was the only one in the parking lot. I thought Colony Square might be closed, but it wasn’t. No one else was in the theater. It felt like I was in a dream, even before watching a movie about dreams within dreams within dreams. Inception was strong, but Christopher Nolan has made three better movies. Afterwards I drove home, the horizon lit orange with fire against a black night.

One night last month I woke up suddenly with no idea what time it was. I realized that I had just awakened from a recurring dream, a wonderful dream that turns to empty disgust when I wake up and realize it is fantasy. And then something amazing happened – I realized I was awake, that it had all happened, that I wasn’t and hadn’t been dreaming at all.

I have been losing at poker. I don’t care. I have been winning at everything else. I have a vague feeling of a noose tightening, but it doesn’t compare to the competing feeling of lying in a hammock under the sun.

A friend of mine had a vivid dream I was going to knock him out and win a poker tournament in Louisville, Kentucky. I should go. I have reason to believe it would happen. But instead I am in Europe chasing bigger dreams. Ireland, London, Scotland. I have never been. I am excited. This trip should have a little bit of everything – adventure, culture, romance, enchantment, self-discovery, and of course, fortune and glory.

Recently I have been struggling to fuse my thoughts lucidly. My brain prefers to digest the world atmospherically. But I am acutely aware of how fortunate I have been. I am filled with powers greater than my own. I am living the dream.

7 Comments:

Blogger Rex55 said...

Hey I just stumbled upon your blog and am happy I did. This was a great post and very well written. You express your thoughts with a genuine fluidity that is really intriguing. I am looking forward to reading more about your adventures abroad, seeing more cool photos, and tapping into some more fresh perspective.
All the best,
Rexy

9:01 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your photos were beautiful. The waking dream and the sleeping dream - "sometimes beautiful", both mysteries to mortals. Let us know if you want contact information for Cousin Betsy. She is in Walberswick, near Norwich, England. Keep writing and have a wonderful trip. AJ

10:34 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was just looking at your pictures and thinking to myself "Tom Fuller really has a non-controversial body-habitus, one that certainly doesn't preclude me from dating him, if hypothetically I was a single woman considering that possibility."

L

6:48 PM  
Blogger Ryan Wanger said...

I'm not sure I could articulate to someone else why this is such a wonderful post. But it is.

9:51 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sweet photos Tom. You were in the Zirkels?? Now you're in Ireland??

Can't wait to hear more.

Do NOT have a Guinness at Mulligan's in Dublin and definitely don't listen to any of the local music in Galway. In fact, don't go to Cork at all.

:)


When you get back we need to talk beer again.
And drink beer again.


ND

6:39 PM  
Blogger AlexXM said...

Nice pictures :)

2:56 PM  
Blogger Desirae said...

Great post Tom! Hope you are having a blast in Europe and can't wait to hear about it when you return. :)

2:12 PM  

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