Picking a Good Hatchet

chaco canyon camping

The man at Ace Hardware said “This is the hatchet I would want,” and he pulled down a small axe, with an embossed leather sheath.  “Nice,” I said, resisting the urge to run my finger down the sharp blade, “but way more hatchet than I need. I just want to pound my tent stakes.” So I selected a beautiful hatchet with a notch for grabbing those tent stakes, and a shaft about a foot long. Only $11 and change. Not bad, for a hatchet.

camp axe

I smile to myself as I gather my camping supplies, thinking of my NYC friends, and my urban life. The Cheryl who squats by a campfire is a different creature, and I am looking forward to being with her again.  I have been visiting my sister in Atlanta, hanging out with her on her screened-in porch, surrounded by tall trees, and going to sleep to the susurration of crickets. It’s a joy to escape the NYC crowds and noise, and to spend my days doing what I please. I had been warned by some friends that I might experience ennui and boredom, but so far, that has not happened. The days are not empty. I research coolers, which are much nicer than the ones I used back in the 90’s..

I just bought a soft-sided cooler, that will plug into the 12v connection in the back of my VW Sportwagen.

cooler bag

I bought a Coleman 2-person tent, with easy assembly and waterproof floor. At night, here in Atlanta, I lay in bed and imagine myself three scant weeks from now, in Chaco Canyon, NM, sitting at my tiny fire, with stars overhead and sandstone walls in front of me, petroglyphs visible in the firelight.

coleman 2-man tent

I’ll read Carlos Castenada’s “The Art of Dreaming” again, by the light of my LED lantern, a gift from my friend Jack.  I may even watch a movie on my tablet, to stay connected to my technological side.  It is so much fun to imagine doing things just for pleasure.

I read online the other day that there is a difference between being motivated and being inspired. Motivation, said the writer, is the result of trying to avoid a negative outcome. For instance, I am motivated to clear my desk, so I can focus better without piles of paper distracting me. I am inspired, on the other hand, to create art, or to do research on an idea. My life in NYC, running Stage Left Studio, was far more occupied with motivated activity than with inspiration.  I’m excited to see where inspiration takes me. Right now, it’s taking me camping!


2 thoughts on “Picking a Good Hatchet

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