I found this today, while looking up books about the Appalachian Trail and those who travel it. My closest friend growing up hiked the entire thing early in his 20’s. He wrote me from the trail and I have to admit, that it planted a seed in my mind about the adventures one can have on the trails away from the everyday hustle and bustle and alone with nature and face-to-face with the heart and soul of who you really are. I have never forgotten his enthusiasm, the look in his eyes when he came home and told me of his adventures. Though, my own ventures onto the trails didn’t happen for many years after our talks, I can say, he awakened a fire in my soul for the same thing.
The book I came across is titled On The Beaten Path: An Appalachian Pilgrimage by Robert Alden Rubin. Here’s the quote that moved me today:
“The whole point for the walkers who seek to follow the entirety of this beaten path is not getting to the top of the hill. It’s going up there and not coming down again – not, at least, until they have found what they have lost, what they’ve gone looking for.
And, make no mistake. Whatever they tell you, they are all looking for something.”