6.10.2009

Our Darkest Nights Are Days To You

The more I travel, the more I believe it . . . places have spirits. This spirit does not come from the collective spirits of the people as much as it comes from the land.

I have now been to the three communities that I'll be at for the summer. Here is their spirit.

Warrensburg, New York (Inside the Adirondack Mountain National Park):

Depressing. There is no two ways about it. I can't put a finger on it other than to say that the two times I've been there I have been literally depressed the whole time. Its a dark place for me.

Calais, Maine

Lonely and Beautiful. I'm here right now and I literally feel like I'm on the edge of the world . . . which isn't too far off. This morning I stood on the absolute most East part of the United States, debating whether or not to peel off and hold the giant star fish attached to the peer (I didn't). The sun rises here at 4:00am. Despite being in a town of 3,500, it feels incredibly lonely here. I drove here from Rutland, VT, and it was by far the most beautiful drive I've ever taken (Through the Green AND White Mountains). But I felt like I was driving to nowhere. The last hour and a half were on HIGHWAY 1 for goodness sake. This place is exactly like I imagined it. Tons of Trees. Hills and mountains. Isolated.

I saw a moose. Just one. 9 hours of driving and he was completely, randomly by the side of the road. To be honest, he looked like the dopiest animal I've ever seen.

This has been an ok place to visit, but after this summer, I don't ever want to come back. Never have I felt so out of touch. I think sometimes the isolation of certain places is portrayed as peaceful and still; ultimately romanticized. All I've had since I've been here is loneliness and anxiousness. However, standing on the pier of the most Eastern part of the United States was awesome, something I'll never forget. From this port, I'll get to see more starfish and also get to go whale watching from a sail boat.

Rutland, Vermont

Spiritual and Authentic. Tucked right in the green mountains, I immediately knew I could live here, even when the city was still at a distance. Right around 50,000 people. Beautiful.

Its a very spiritual place and you can feel it. New Age, Occult and Cult practices are common and apparent here. Its best described as a sister city to to Manitou Spring, CO. And just like Manitou Springs, it is also a home to the 12 Tribes Cult. I had a run in with this cult in Manitou Springs, CO that led to an almost 3 hour conversation and ended with me giving back the tea I purchased, one of my friends crying and me trying to convince them to cast out the demon in me that they kept claiming was deceiving me. I could write a whole post on them, I actually know a lot about them from the research I've done after that conversation. They own a cafe downtown Rutland. When I get a free day, I'm excited to go there and have another discussion with them.

People here are original and unique, but there is not a hint of pretentiousness. No one here is trying to be eccentric, they just are. No one is trying to fit an image or impress anyone, Hence, authentic. The mountains are full of hippies as well. Real hippies. The kind that have fled society to go the mountains and live close to the earth.

While the people here definitely contribute to the "Spirit" of the town, I would still argue that people do not define the spirit of a place. One thing about mountain towns like this is that the land seems to draw in these kind of people.

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So generally speaking, The Northeast is more beautiful than I imagined, but more lonely than I had guessed. I don't really like it. I know I'll come to enjoy my time here, but I don't see why I'd ever be back.

3 comments:

Laura said...

come home soon!

Liz.EJ.Lizzard.Elizabeth. said...

"To be honest, he looked like the dopiest animal I've ever seen"

this made me laugh out loud in the library, people looked, thanks tyler :)

luke said...

interesting to hear about your sites. hope all is going well within these places and you can perhaps see some transformation. hope to talk to you soon.