Monday, July 12, 2010

Twenty Thousand and something

measure a year?
In daylights? In sunsets? In midnights? In cups of coffee? In inches? In miles? In laughter? In strife?

I measure my year in miles.

Some celebrate milestones and set goals for the calendar year, some for the fiscal year--but I guess my time centers around the odometric year. Referring, of course, to the year as measured by my odometer.

I looked at the mileage in my car last week and was astounded. I did some quick math in my head, rounded generously up, and realized that I had driven 20,000 miles in my car the past twelve months. This will come as no surprise to those who have read such blog posts of mine as South on I-15 and the like.

I visited friends and families in the greater L.A. area, aunts and uncles in Idaho, siblings in Oregon, hot-spots in Northern California and Nevada alike, and regularly find myself on the stretch between Provo and Salt Lake City.

20,000 miles.

That's 32,187 kilometers.
That's 83.3% of the circumference of the earth at its equator.
I could, with 20,000 miles, drive from San Francisco to New York and back again (roundtrip) approximately 3.5 times.
I averaged 54.79 miles per day this past year. Is that ridiculous or normal?
I could travel 6,666 of the 20,000 leagues Jules Verne wrote about.
If I was paid a dollar for each mile I drove, I would have paid off my car in its entirety.

And this excludes the 2+ months spent in Ukraine, where I didn't have a car. Also excluded are the miles spent flying, being driven or chauffeured, and walking. I feel strongly that youth is not a matter of where you've been, but how far you've gone. I am young and am working on getting as far as possible. In my triathlon of driving, walking, and flying, I like to think I have cumulatively circumnavigated the globe without ever having to actually make the trip. A man may be classified a world travel if by walking every day to the store, he eventually walks the distance from mile 1 to 24,900.

I know I said I was negative. It was a passing fad. Kids were doing it. It can be extremely healthy to be a bit unhealthy from time to brief time. Does that make sense? I don't hate Provo, I am seeing the Prop 8 movie in a new light, I find purpose in small things, and I have a blossoming renewal of faith in the reality of love.

"And this I believe: that the free, exploring mind of the individual human

is the most valuable thing in the world. And this I would fight for: the

freedom of the mind to take any direction it wishes, undirected."

-East of Eden, Steinbeck

I am reading East of Eden right now by John Steinbeck. I am eating it up. Don't give me self-help books, books about modern politics or decaying religion right now. I know what people who are living have to say, and I'll value it in about 100 years--unless it proves to be vanity and fleeting (which most modern literature is, and I suppose, always has been). I see the world in Sam Hamiltons and Cal Trasks--and it's a pretty good world I see.

I am working again at the SLC Temple painting for the summer. I will take a trip to Tahoe soon and to Disneyland shortly thereafter. It's the beginning of another odometric year -- time is a-wastin'.

1 comment:

  1. A few things:

    1. Glad to hear you've refound faith in love!

    2. "Triathalon of driving, walking, and flying"--clever!

    3. I really, really like that Steinbeck quote! (But you've got to admit, it could have some dangerous implications, right?)