"There is an intense but simple thrill in setting off ... knowing that everything you need is on your back. It is a confidence in having left all inessentials behind, and of entering a world of natural beauty which has not been violated, where money has no values, and possessions are a deadweight. The person with the fewest possessions is the freest: Thoreau was right." — Paul Theroux, The Happy Isles of Oceania
Eight months ago, it seemed a wild idea. But now, as with all my far-flung adventures, the time has come to buy the ticket, pack the bag, and make it happen.
On January 30, I'll board a plane and fly to Key West. I'll buy a kayak and some provisions, have a nice meal, and sleep in a hotel with running water and beds and electricity. The next morning, I'll dip my kayak in the water and paddle north, seven short miles away from all of it.
For thirty days, I'll simply exist on a tiny island, something five-hundred feet in diameter with some sand and trees and sun. It'll have no name, no people, no traces of development, no billboards or wifi, and certainly no rowdy rumble of automobiles.
For thirty days, I'll build a shelter, and maybe fashion some tools, and see if I can't set my provisions aside and find some food and water on my tiny floating universe. I'll read books, and write, and meditate, and do little else. Call it a reboot—a needed detox from a society of big wants and little attentions.
I don't imagine it'll be much fun. I don't imagine it'll be very comfortable, either. Hell, I don't really know what I expect to learn, or what I hope to. I suppose I never really do with these things, but I always end up learning something beautiful anyway.
More details in a bit.
|One of these islands will soon be home.|