Half a Month 

According to the statistics on the blogging software here, it has been about a half of month since I last posted anything here. The classic excuse is to say that I have been way too busy to post anything on the site, but to be honest, that is not the whole explanation. In some ways, these last three weeks have been a serious period of introspection for me. My school career is finally at a crossroads. After several meetings with administration, professors, and various other bureaucratic University officials, the only thing left for me to do is my incomplete schoolwork. I can get no further in my academic career unless I show some progress in that regard.

But working things out at school has not been the only thing that has happened during this period. For example, while visiting my parents during the previous week, I nearly broke my foot. While negotiating my way through my mother's office, I stepped on my foot sideways and then fell forward. I think I even heard a loud snap that concerns me. In any event, after a couple of days a limping on an ankle that has swollen up to baseball size, I have developed a rather nice purple bruise. I can walk on it without much pain now, but I still feel a little twinge whenever I move it strangely.

Alsea Falls

The above picture is from a small excursion that I took on my way back home from my parents. A two-hour detour into the Cascade Mountains led to my discovery of Alsea Falls, a secluded state park with a series of hiking trails and connecting campgrounds. Strangely, when I visited the falls they were completely deserted, so I took the opportunity to take some pictures and think about stuff. I think if I get some more time to spend by myself, I'll revisit.

Finally, the other major event to occur during this period was my attending the funeral of a friend. The friend was more than twice my age and was afflicted with emphysema that worsened towards the end of his life. However, during (and after) the brief period in which I knew him--about a year and half--I considered him a very close friend. In some ways, I considered it an honor to be at his funeral and to be able to commemorate his life among his many friends. I only wish I took the opportunity to visit him more before he passed away. Needless to say, the whole experience led me to think about the heavy questions surrounding life, death, and spirituality. I haven't come to any real conclusions about any of those things, but I don't think that it is the point to come to conclusions. Rather, it may be more useful to occasionally consider these things and let them filter through your mind. It may be like letting the rain and sun work on the soil in which a seed is planted. The fruit of such thinking may come later, or may even develop slowly without your noticing, but as long as one thinks about it, the benefit will be there.

06 August 2005
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