Boca Raton, FL – March 25, 2013
I slept in a beautiful house last night. Three stories. Soft bed. Warm shower. A deck overlooking Biscayne Bay. I’ve stayed there before. It’s my aunt’s house and the doors are always open for me, there’s always hugs and kisses on the cheek, food in the refrigerator, and an empty bed to sleep in. But it’s stuck in one place and I must move. I watched my aunt, cousins, and uncle wave at me, watched them disappear back into the house, watched the familiar fade into the horizon.
Now there is no place to sleep, just beautiful houses crowding every inch of the intercoastal, pressing against the shore. Mega yachts moor along docks like mini-cruise ships. Helicopters hang off decks the size of apartments. Every tiny piece of land has been cataloged, processed, and divided.
I only want to sleep.
There are no quiet cracks to slide into, no undeveloped pieces, no slips of open sand. There’s only exhaustion, envy, and unused second homes. There’s only perfect lawns, docks, and gardens. There’s only a thousand places to sleep concealed like cake behind a glass counter.
My eyes ache and the world blurs. The western sky darkens. Day fades into night. My arms feel dead. I catch myself slumping over. Time drifts and holds still, bursts forward and stops, minutes disappear from my memory. Signs blare out alarm warnings. Docks read “no trespassing.” Close places feels distant and untouchable. The eastern sky brightens. Stars wink away in handfuls. Tiled roofs glow in the morning sun.
I squint at the world. Million dollar houses blur into memories of soft beds and warm showers. My eyes burn and I paddle on.
Want to hear more about the trip or some of the other adventures I’ve taken? I’ll be giving two different presentations at the Midwest Mountaineering Expo in the Twin Cities this weekend. On Saturday, April 27th from 11:45-12:45, I will talk about paddling from the Angle to Key West and on Sunday, April 28th from 2:15-3:15, I will talk about taking the leap and doing the adventures you’ve always dreamed of.