Monday, March 3, 2008

The Small Things

Since my last post I've just been living in the Suby on the beach in Kaikoura. Been surfing tons and spending a lot of time reading and writing. Here's a couple of journal entries for your entertainment.

March 1st, 2008,
I've never really lived out of a car for this long and been in one place. I think its been about 2 weeks now. Been adjusting to life alone again. After staying with the McLaren's and an awesome adventure with Steph, it's kind of hard getting back into the solo groove. I've been getting up, make some coffee, grab a bite to eat and check the surf. Haven't had a day I haven't surfed yet so that occupies me until the afternoon. Then I grab some lunch, read, stare, write, stare, play the guitar, stare some more and BOOM! Time for an evening surf. I've surfed almost every evening since I've been here, so that occupies me until dinner and then its dark. I'm getting really good at killin days. How did I ever get anything done with a job? Maybe I could get paid to teach people to do nothing and be good at it? Occasionally, the idea of a shower comes into my mind. But I crush it like the little sand flies that attack my ankles every evening on the beach. Because I know that while I'm low on funds and I'm camping for free on the beach, showers are more of a luxury than a necessity. Besides, I'm in the the ocean everyday for 4-5 hours. Isn't that a form of bathing? People pay big money for salt-water soaks right? Anyways, I don't think that I smell that bad, and I remember from my Alaska experiences that the 5th day feeling is one of the best. It's the day you forget when the last time you had a shower and then actually start to feel good about it. It's an amazing feeling that few of us ever get to experience. Try it sometime...really. But I am past the fifth day, and a shower is actually sounding quite nice. My wetsuit and booties, that haven't dried out in a really, really long time, desperately need one as well. I do find it quite amazing how its the little things in life that that will totally grasp you in appreciation when you no longer have them. Its like a simple life pleasure can totally transform your mood. Things we overlook and don't appreciate in a society with so much money that there is no time to enjoy these things. Not only showers, which if you think about it, is an incredible invention in itself. But I'm talking about clean laundry, a toilet, running water to brush your teeth with, fresh fruit, cold beer, a firm mattress, sheets, clean pillows, proper lighting at night, not being cold, eating at a table, hanging out with no bugs around, a proper kitchen, Sharp knifes, stoves with an endless supply of heat or gas. These are the things given to us that we never really think about because they're expected to be there. Anything less would be unacceptable. But what if we didn't have them? Then they become very important and make us appreciate them. For example let me go back to the shower invention. They are amazing if you ever take the time to think about them. I feel like they're one of man-kinds greatest achievements, right up there with modern medicine and space exploration. I mean think about it. Really think about it. They're these clean (for the most part) box-like rooms made of some kind of waterproof material like tile, plastic, glass or fiberglass. With just a flick of the wrist, we turn on the water and out it flows from some kind of custom made shower head. Where does the water really come from? How does it flow that perfectly? Where does the water go? We adjust the water temperature so it is perfect. Stop right there. How good does it feel when you first step in? Really give it some though. It's amazing. Especially if you're cold. Then you soak and rinse and wash yourself with some type of product that most of us don't really know what it is other then it leaves us smelling good and feeling clean. We turn off this modern amazingness, and dry ourselves with some kind of clean, dry, absorbent, usually cotton cloth. Think of that feeling right then. That is the cleanest you will feel until your next rendezvous with the clean water box thingy. Its an incredible feeling and one we need to appreciate for what it is.

I'll stop there to prevent from further boring, nonsense. More later. Today is March 4th. I finally had my first shower in over a week. It wasn't so much as I felt like I needed on as much as my wetsuit did. I couldn't handle the smell as I paddled out anymore. I finally went to a proper campground to use the facilities. All is clean and life is good. The weather changed on me a bit and turned really cold and rainy. Fall is here. I caught a glimpse of the mountains this afternoon during a cloud break and the tops were covered in snow. A lot of snow. It was beautiful.

PS- Keep the comments coming! I love them and its great to hear from people. Comments are awesome!


Jed and Kate said...

Crazy. I've totally experienced the wonderment of a 5th day or so without a shower and thought those same things about how incredible of an invention the shower actually is. What I haven't experienced is the extreme level of solitude you're living in. I think lots of people couldn't handle that like you can. Reminds me of Into the Wild...haven't seen it, just read the book. Pretty good. Just make sure you have a warm place to stay when it starts getting cold does it get there?

Lucas said...

Ryan, you are hilarious! I would totally pay to have you teach me how to do nothing,and be good at it. I would pay a shit load just to have that peace of mind! So stoked you got some rugged time in at such a stellar location, sea life and all! And booyakasha to the shower.