Monday, August 29, 2011

Pics of the Week (and mini-reflection on a rather cliché R. Frost poem)

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood...

... I took the one less traveled by

The other day I spent five straight hours romping around and hiking/exploring just about everything within a three-mile radius of my grandfather's cabin and managed to snap a few photos along the way (the above photos included). I have been hiking the trails around here for my entire life, but this is the first time I just grabbed a machete and went up in the woods and walked around, trusting my sense of direction and general ability to not get lost without a path. After my little excursion I managed to locate one of the main paths, and I came up upon it right as it forks into two paths. Anyone who doesn't want to get lost goes left on this trail, but since I was feeling rather adventurous and had never taken the trail to the right, I decided to extend my exploration and follow wherever that trail would take me.

So here comes the Robert Frost poem part. First of all, read that poem very carefully. The half-hour lesson we all got in fourth grade was that the dude in the poem took the less traveled road and was better off- thus, little children, be free-thinking nonconformists and go change the world you can do it blah blah blah.

But- as I just said, read that poem carefully. The poetic voice mentions no positive outcome. His taking the less traveled road made "all the difference," but what kind of difference?
Here's the last stanza of that poem:

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

Ahh, with a sigh. Would he be sighing if it made a positive difference? Maybe he wishes he had just taken the easier road or been a conformist instead of facing a life of hardship.

Anyways, lets apply that to my little adventure. I say with a sigh that I ended up spending an additional two hours wandering around in the woods when, if I had taken the clearly easier path, I could have been already back at the cabin munchin' on leftover bratwurst. Made all the difference? Meh, not really. But it made me take a second look at that poem...

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