Bernie Sanders appealed to the young, the ones who want a chance in life. The older half of the idealistic political sandwich wistfully joined in for "one more chance". A week ago I took my chance and started hiking a stretch of the Pacific Crest Trail, in Washington state. Hiking up another steep incline I feel my ideals "Bern" under the load on my shoulders. The young ones passing by, move faster - they have bigger goals, lighter loads. They don't need the comforts of padding at night, padding for the shoulders, the knee band, the soft socks around the bunions - They carry less food, since they reach re-supply places faster.
We're here on the trail, young ones and older ones in the shoulder seasons of our life, finding out how far we can take ourselves, finding out what we're made of. There are 2 rules on the trail: hike your own hike and .carry your own load -representing a very American independent mindset.
We share nature, we share information about the trail ahead as North bounders meet
South bounders. Sprinkled among us through-hikers, the day hikers, the weekend hikers going camping at a pretty spot - show us their wistful eyes about doing more.
The last two weeks the American political machine has been talking a lot at their conventions about the American dream for MORE, more for me, and more for those I call mine. For the young ones and the old ones on the trail more is in each step, each breath we take. We're not waiting for someone else to make it happen, we make it happen, sandwiching the miles between rest stops in the day, between re-supply points on the trail.. More is in the miles we cover.
More is the view of towering snowy Mt. Rainier, more is a bear cub sighting, more is the wild waxy bear grass blooming in filtered sunlight, more is a hot face under a cold waterfall, more is the taste of sweet wild strawberries, huckleberries, raspberries hugging the trail. More is the relief felt when dipping a sweaty body in a garnet mountain lake, the relief felt when putting the pack down. More is the one cup of hot tea in the cool of the misty morning. More are the precious moments squeezed out of the hard labor of moving the feet, legs, arms, swinging the body along the trail, mile after mile - fast or slow, young or old, more means the same on the trail.
I know that those out on the campaign trail to gather votes are doing the hard work of gathering, vote after vote. I hope that "more" is a shared sense of more, not just more power for a few. For now I'll stick with the MORE nature has to offer.