“For one year I traveled. For one year I climbed.
From the high latitudes of Norway’s Northwest coast,
To the incredible peaks that Southern Patagonia hosts.
Bigwalls in Yosemite Valley,
snorkeling off a boat in Hawaii.
Cold nights spent under the Alaskan sky,
for a year I was able to spread my wings and fly.”
While it is nice to have one’s wings, what are they without a nest to return to? As my year proceeded I went from admiring every plane takeoff and landing to dreading even the thought of another hour of travel. While I was still enjoying my time spent at the destination, I knew it was time to stop. To take a break from living out of a duffel bag (or three). To have a routine again. To eat and train well. To make some money. To become excited about the journey once again.
Now, and for the last four months, I have been living the life of a Weekend Warrior. No. That is not true. Let me try again. For the last four months I have been living the life of a Sunday Climber (and even that might be giving myself too much credit). Work, school, and training take up all of the weekday hours. Saturday is reserved for meal prep, homework, and spending time with my wife. This leaves Sunday; one day a week for me to go play on the rocks and in the forest. To do the thing that I quite possibly love the most in this world. Yet still, even with this seemingly all-consuming passion and desire, the same desire that has taken me to the far-flung corners of the globe, I still struggle to get out the door many Sundays.
Please, don’t get me wrong. I am not trying to complain. I feel that I am one of the few, lucky people on the planet who has the opportunity to spend each day doing exactly what it is they want to do. I want to be doing what I am doing. I want and need the break; the time to prepare mentally, physically, and financially for the next adventure. I enjoy what I do when I am at home. It is only that with all of responsibilities that come with the Monday through Friday work week, I often struggle to find the motivation to climb, and especially to try hard.
This is a very different struggle to that I face on climbing expeditions. On an expedition you miss things and people. You often pine for the easy life, for a shower and a warm, dry place to sit and rest. Even the though the struggles can be intense, you always know that they are temporary. They don’t feel as long-term, and they aren’t. Not like now. In addition, expeditions are simple. You are there to climb, and climbing is everything. There is none of this balancing act that makes up all of our daily lives.
And it is with this in mind that my sincerest admiration and respect goes out to all you Weekend Warriors. You all are the real heroes of this climbing game. You all who have the motivation, the skills, and the discipline to get after it on the weekends. You all who make the tough sacrifices, drive the hard bargains, and strike the balance between those pressing obligations and the pursuit of something personal, selfish, and beautiful. It is you who inspire me to be a better climber. Thank you all for setting the bar high, for giving me something to strive for, and for encouraging me to make the most of that brief stretch of time between Friday afternoon and Monday morning.
On kiva matkustaa, mutta jos ei voi palata kotiin, se on arvotonta. Viime vuonna minä menin joka paikkaan. Norjasta Alaskaan, Jossesta Havaijille, mä menin. Se oli niin onnellista, mutta olin väsyin lopuksi. Oli vaikeaa mennä joka päivä, koko ajan. Mä halusin taukoa.
Nyt ja vimeiset neljä kuukautta, Minulla on ollut tuo tauko. Arkipäivisin teen töitä, menen kouluun ja reenaan. Lauantaisin, mä teen ruokaa, teen läksyjä, ja rentoudun mun vaimoni kanssa. Ja Sunnuntaisin? Sunnuntaisin on kiipeilypäivä. Vaikka mä rakastan kiipeilyä, niin kun sunnuntai tule, miksi on niin vaikeaa mennä ulos ja kiipeillä?
Ehkä olen laiska, ehkä olen kiireinen. Mä en tiedä oikeasti, mutta tiedän, että se on vaikeaa. On vaikeaa tasa painoilla työelämän, kotielämän, ja kiipeilyelämän välillä. Ja minulle sen pitäsi olla helppoa. Minulla ei ole lapsia, ja minun työnantaja on ymmärtäväinen.
Kun minä ajattelen tätä, olen inspiroidun. Te inspiroitte minua. Te inspiroitte minua olemaan parempi kiipeilijä. Te inspiroitte minua käymään kiipeilyalueilla lähellä minua. Te inspiroitte minua menemään kiipeilemään ja yrittämään kovaa. Kaikille teille Viikonlopun Sankareille, Kiitos paljon.