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climbing life

Every year we get a little older. How you choose to celebrate is up to you. Take the birthday challenge. Writer Brendan Leonard delivers a dedication to the joys – both big and small – of the climbing life. What are your 35?

“After all these years, I refuse to believe joy costs something, or that we have to get on a plane to find it, that it has to happen on our vacation, or that dreams come true on a tuesday

I don’t know what I want to be, but I don’t believe it involves spreadsheets and emails, or big paychecks

I know what I would give thanks to, I love spicy food, tipping big,  I give thanks to vehicles we call home, and living off other peoples leftovers, for evolving as a person

this one is for getting soaked by rainstorms

for cereal on Saturday mornings as a kid

and three legged dogs who run

walking on rocky mountain ridge lines

and stones that skip all the way to the deepest part of the lake

and watching the golden light at the last hour of the day turn the desert into a soft glowing place.

when i reach that final minute on that final day, I won’t remember shitty bosses or what happened on facebook

I’ll remember

riding my bike on city streets at night,

gravel roads that stretch on forever

and all the highs and lows of family

standing in the middle of icy rivers, wondering what it is like being a fish

and making pretty girls laugh, and friends, of course my friends

I try to collect moments, I step back and watch the movie that is my life for just a second

cause it is easy to miss the good stuff, the magic, when it happens

I try really hard to realize it when it is amazing, and even when it is not

I know something happens when you finally see a place you have seen on postcards and wall calendars your whole life

and I know sometimes a beautiful dress can make a beautiful girl, just like that.

the best way to feel the ocean is to dive right into the waves

the same way that you do with the ocean of people on city sideways

this one is for

is better than any piece of gear you can buy

this one is for trying hard,

for wonder

for people who rock out in the car and have the music turned up so loud that everyone else in traffic can hear it

and coffee,

thank god for coffee

We think our heroes have to be good at throwing  or catching balls

and we sit down in on a bar stool, drink beer, and watch them have the time of their lives on a tv screen

my hereos are my belay partners,

blind people who cross the street by themselves

and those who discover on the inside, we are all capable of surprising ourselves

we all have dreams, but they don’t mean much if we don’t act on them

if we put them in a drawyer entitled someday for when we think we will have more time

I try to get out there, to go to amazing places, to having incredible conversations with incredible people.

I think it all adds up somewhere

and when it does, you are not doing something, you are being something

and what I want to be is happy, excited, and inspired

today I am 35, that last rope length, that is for me, for my next 35

I don’t want to say I wish, I want to say DAMN! that was awesome”


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1 Comment
  1. Reply Paul Rozehnal December 2, 2016 at 7:36 pm

    pure poetry

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