Monday, July 21, 2014

Wild by Cheryl Strayed

Wild. This is a pretty good memoir told by a woman who has a rich vocabulary and good sense of imagery. You will definitely be thinking about this book after you finish it.

I picked up this book at my local library for a couple of reasons. 
#1: There were about 10 copies on the popular shelf
#2: It was Oprah "certified"
#3: The first page really hooked me
#4: It will be a movie featuring Reese Witherspoon sometime this year

Those were 4 good reasons in my mind to check this book out. I'm so glad I did. As I mentioned, this book resonated with me. I found myself talking about it to friends, family, and strangers just to have conversation. When the book cover says, "From lost to found on the Pacific Crest Trail," I didn't quite know what that was going to mean. Sure, this was going to be a book about self-discovery, self-confidence, and self-determination. What I didn't know was that this book would serve as an advertisement for readers to get off their lazy arses and go out in the world to make something of themselves. Cheryl Strayed, was exactly what her last name implies-strayed from reality, strayed from hope, strayed from love. Her beautiful adventure may have been a little pessimistic, and feminist, yet through the course of her 1100 mile hike, I feel as though I found a better sense of purpose in my own life. Cheryl, in her middle 20's, a normal woman just like ME decided on a hunch to hike this alone. Alone! Nuts. As this occurred, I tried to visualize myself doing something like this. And I must say, you've got balls Cheryl Strayed. With your Monster pack and dead toenails, I commend you. I thank you for a good read and a good life lesson. 
Here are a few of my favorite quotes from the book: 

"It was my life, like all lives, mysterious and irrevocable, and sacred. So very close, so very present, so very belonging to me. How wild it was to let it be."

"I was a pebble. I was a leaf. I was the jagged branch of a tree. I was nothing to them and they were everything to me."

"The universe, I'd learned, was never, ever kidding."

"Alone had always felt like an actual place to me, as if it weren't a state of being, but rather a room where I could retreat to be who I really was."

One of her last stops being Crater Lake was so magically described that I have added it to my bucket list. Apparently the water is so unbelievably blue from melted snow and rains. Just wow. 

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