Friday, July 24, 2009

Permission to Pass in Peace

I don't think they mean bicyclists

A girl really should hop on the back of a motorcycle more than once every five years but every five years is better than nothin'! Today, when I got a chance to ride to Durango with my friend's boyfriend on the back of his Suzuki Vstrom it broke the 5 year drought.

Born to be Wild.

Skimming along the surface of the earth as a passenger exposed to the elements gives a better perspective than as someone at the handlebars or the wheel. In the sparsely populated southwest you can easily see the upheavals of the eons and with much more clarity. One gets the sense that we were indeed strangers here once upon a time, deposited on the surface many thousands of years ago. Perhaps as explorers, perhaps as refugees. We learned to adapt and then to dominate - to our own detriment. It's the prerogative of the Earth whether to embrace us or not, not the other way around. Gliding along at 75 mph, protected merely by some clothing and a helmet one becomes aware of one's own fragility in the landscape. The forest and the cliffs couldn't care less if I go splat. Our lesson, I believe is to learn how to respect Her and live harmoniously with the landscape and each other. We are obliged to behave as guests of our gracious host who has endured us these many thousands of years.

Of course, we are free to build more fiery chariots and bug the hell off to harass any other blue planet we are fortunate enough to find. However, if we try Her patience too long, she will simply rid herself of us by becoming inhospitable.

As I pass Lookout Point on Mesa Verde, renown site of vast Native American ruins, it's easy to imagine the Anasazi performing ceremonies on it's cliff tops. It makes me wonder how many generations it took for us to forget where we came from. Did our ancestors genetically engineer their offspring with whatever Cro-Magnon or Neanderthal species Earth's evolution had produced at the time? Earth's elements are now what make up my existence and all human kind, but the Earth is not a birthright, it is a gift that appeared as a jewel in the blackness of space millenia ago and innocently welcomed weary travelers. Along with the memory of my extra-terrestrial origins I have also lost the ability to imagine any home more beautiful than this.

Ramblings from the lunatic fringe to be sure. Many others have expressed these theories before and far better than I. But these are the things you think about on your first vacation in years while going 75 mph on the back of a motorcycle down hwy 160 in southwestern Colorado.

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