Saturday, January 26, 2013

Wooo! First post!

This is going to be about something I wanted to say in the first class when asked why I signed up for this course, but I was a little bit shy about it. I figure the extremely public domain of the internet is less intimidating than a <30 person class. I realize this is highly illogical. But now, I’ve something to use as a reference. So. Something that really struck me in our first reading, the Krakauer excerpt, was the point in the story that the author experienced a crippling loneliness after the plane left. This is something I also experience when on my “solo” during my Outward Bound trip in Alaska. Granted, it was to a lesser extent than Krakauer’s true aloneness, but the effect was the same. I found it somewhat terrifying, to be honest, because essentially one is left alone with oneself and the world. And with no one to talk to, I was forced to turn inward and study myself and my ability to survive, as well as the composure and attitude with which I faced that challenge. It was one of the most moving, frightening, and enlightening experiences of my life, and I found that this past experience allowed me to connect with the story and the author. I also wondered if it’s even possible to fully describe what happens when one is in such an extreme situation, especially since Krakauer spent so little text on those moments of his trip. I think this was the best thing I took away from my experience, but I suppose it was also the most private thing, too. It’s an unfortunate paradox that something so magical can’t be adequately shared with others through any medium but the sharing of the experience itself. And yet, here we are reading adventure narratives that people took the time to write because we can get something valuable out of it.

1 comment:

  1. This was a very moving post. I find your point about having to turn inward when you found yourself without human contact quite interesting. Perhaps this is partially why Krakauer came away from his solo expedition feeling as though he had failed? Maybe if he'd had someone to share the experience with, that person could have reassured him that despite his goal not being realized in full, the trip was ultimately successful in that he reached the summit.