So I stand there looking down two paths.
One takes me to place that seems harsh and mean-spirited. It is full of thorns and poison ivy. It seems, to me, to be a claustrophobic space. And from where I’m standing the more I head in that direction, the smaller the space is to move.
The other path is wider and seems to open up, however, it doesn’t really make sense where the path goes. It appears to be a path with more of a maze-like direction. Lots of dead ends. Lots of paths that really just lead back to the starting point.
One is too closed.
One is too open.
Both are loud and noisy with the commotion from those trying to make their way through.
People are rushing by me and I feel the breeze of their movement which naturally stirs me to move too. There are also nudges towards both that are palatable from those passing by.
Wind. Nudge. Breeze. Bump. A stream of bodies.
I’m near the entrance of both paths and able to see those that have just entered start to feel some reservation, but I see them move forward. They are encouraging each other and their shared frustrations to navigate helps to give off the aroma of a tribal bond. The scent is so intoxicating, and motivating.
Also near the entrance, there are gathered, men and women, that are very helpful with answers to questions that I’m not even asking. They are yelling at people to come to their path. They are true evangelist and apologist. They have the persona of really effective speaker: “A step in this direction and away from the other, is a step towards truth, fulfillment, and self-actualization”.
That works for some.
Some just need to see a friend or family member in a path to motivate them. Although some go towards those they know and some go away simply because of those people.
Although, most of the people I see have chosen one of the two paths, and the those that haven’t yet are heading to one, I see a small group of people around a fire outside the entrances, off to the side.
I go over there to see what there are doing and I notice that they sit peacefully just staring into the fire. This is a group that doesn’t share much in common on the outside. They are the Island of Misfit toys, the Rat Pack, and the Planeteers.
They have nothing in common, but they don’t seemed bothered by it, because they are rarely looking up from there gaze at the peaceful embers.
Every now and again, those heading towards the path yell something at one the campers to get them to look up. Occasionally one does and gets up to see what the other wants. They rarely come back to campsite but no one sits in their seat, just in case.
I find a spot there to rest.