I’m at 9,430 feet in the Big Horn Mountains in Wyoming with the sun setting on one side of the mountain and the moon rising on the other side. High above the tree line the air is pure and crisp with no scent. It’s so quiet my ears are ringing.
I’m at peace and feeling on top of the world. Maybe it’s the thin air or maybe I’m experiencing what Dr. Maslow calls a “Peak Experience” or as a Buddhist might say – a “moment of Zen”. Is this the “Rocky Mountain High” that John Denver sung about?
|The moon is rising from where I came.||The sun is setting on where I am going.|
I’m no astrologist. But when you’re a “middle aged man” and you’re at almost ten thousand feet alone with the sun setting on your right and the moon rising on your left it must mean something, right? Have I arrived at the cross roads of life?
My past life is on the side of the mountain that I came from and my future life is on the other side of the mountain where I’m going. There is nothing up here but the road going East from where I came and the road going West to where I’m going.
On the way up the mountain, during my past life, I stopped along a creek to feel the snow and make it into a snowball. I rolled it in my hands, threw it into the stream and watched as it floated and then melted in the flowing water.
I thought how life was a race against the setting sun. You can race toward the sun or simply wait until it sets. But no matter what you choose the sun sets on each of us. The sunrise is our birth, the hot noon sun is our middle life and the golden sunset is our final golden years.
But right now I’m here living the moment and writing it down and snapping photos as the sun is setting and the moon is rising.
The light is getting dark and I know I have to move on. After all, “peak experiences” are brief pointed peaks not long plateaus. The sun was going and the moon could not light the road down. There was only the way forward down into the darkening valley below.