I’ve met some cool and interesting people over the last ten days. A philosophical Subway sandwich maker, an ambitious dog sledder who wants to do rescue work in the backcountry of Alaska with her dogs, a hard chaw jawed cowboy with a passion for painting, an organic goat farmer that gave up everything to tour South America, an ex meth addict, five years clean, a park ranger in Yellowstone who’s longing for his home state of Kentucky, a fellow Canadian that reminds me of me, at an older age, a guy from Utah that abandoned his Mormonism, and an open and honest soul – letting the people in her life know “this is who I am, take it or leave it.”
Everyone has a story. All you have to do is be willing to shut up and listen. Even that quiet guy at the end of the bar, or the grouchy old hermit down the street. The loners, no matter what they tell you, it’s not necessarily because they enjoy solitude – it’s because they’ve tried to blend into the world before, and it continues to disappoint them. But if the right person comes along, they’ll open up.
I see it as we’re all sort of like locks and keys. It takes the right key to open the lock. What works for some locks, doesn’t work for others. When it doesn’t, sometimes you just gotta pick the lock until it opens.
Almost out of necessity, we’ve evolved into these social beings. Depending on one another in the past gave us a better ability to make it under tough conditions. The survival threats are not the same in today’s day and age, but people still have a need to connect with others whether they realize it or not. I think the lack of connections can lead to all kinds of problems, loneliness being the most obvious.
I’ve noticed in the breweries I’ve been to, people are there to enjoy the beer, but it’s the social aspect with friends, family, locals and a few outsiders they seem to really enjoy. The beer is the appetizer to the companionship.
In this world, it’s nice to see people socializing where social media isn’t involved. At one time, our survival depended on trusting supportive relationships and I think deep down it still does. It doesn’t matter how sophisticated we become, emotional connection remains the soul part of being human. We need each other. NP