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Walking to Nowhere: an Odyssey

CMJ's picture

First: this campus has some highly strange things in and around it (Moon bench? What?). Second, my version of Thoreauvian walking forced me to notice these weird things that are out and about around me everyday. I didn't have anywhere I was walking to, so my brain and my body began occupying themselves (after about 20 minutes of solid walking) with not what I was going to have for dinner or what I was going to do after I ate, but with the direct stimuli around me. Notable things I found (in a manner of speaking, they weren't lost exactly) were a huge, fat, making-sound-in-the-trees insect in the grass near Brecon (terrifying), a surprising amount of bumperstickers in various parking lots, very few pedestrian sidewalks (sadly..), and a medium-sized, permanent-looking fake boulder plopped down near the entrance to Denbigh. The latter was by far the most provoking thing I had seen all day. Of course, my mind immediately races to the fantastical: hidden pirate treasure from the 18th century colonial days! But really, let's be serious. Why would there be a fake rock anywhere on campus? Question for further thought/action..

However, after this exciting (or boring) venture out, I had some difficulty putting thoughts into words and making my writing interesting, frankly. It is only now, after I have taken the laborious steps of writing three pages on a mere 1-hour walk and a dense article of Thoreau's, that I have made some parallels to my brief walk. The way I took was basically a very circuitous route back to my homey dorm room from the far-flung campus center, and on the way, discovered some very interesting things which I was not searching for. I became a modern-day, female, extremely abridged version of one of my favorite Greek heroes, Odysseus. In essence ours, and many other people's stories are the same. Mine just happened to be an hour long and the only "monster" I encountered was a 3-inch long flying insect.