Skip to main content

9. Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed

I have read reviews calling this woman a "dimwit" and "self-absorbed". I can only say "BRAVO" to her! She did what many have never been able to do. What guts to hike the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) with zero backpacking experience and being totally out of shape!

She is an intelligent writer. Some of her words were almost amusingly too "big" for this kind of book, but I couldn't put the book down (It helped that my back was out, and I had nowhere else to go). Her reflections are poignant, and those days of solitude and battling the elements were better than therapy. 


I had this on hold for months. Therefore I missed reading it before my library held a "Random Review" in December to a packed audience. The reviewer, Leslie Richards, had hiked all of the Oregon part of the PCT, but she reiterated that her story was "G rated" compared to Cheryl's. This made me hesitant to read it. Cheryl is brutally honest. So the book is definitely NOT "G rated". Cheryl was an extremely promiscuous 20-something, but I knew that deep down it was due to her deep need to get something that she did not get as a child. Some parts were "R" or even "X" rated; so be forewarned! Some excerpts were too graphic for my tastes, and I wonder that she doesn't have diseases brought on by her years of VERY casual sex with strangers! YUK! I was happy that she came to not want that by the end of the book. 

Another fun thing about the book was that she was at many places I have been on day hikes: Castle Crags, Jefferson Wilderness near Three Finger Jack, Crater Lake, Timberline Lodge. I imagined her hiking through, gazing at the beautiful blue of Crater Lake (just went there in September) or eating food in the over-priced dining rooms of the lodges! I wish I could have been there to treat her to a meal. She was so poor when she hiked the PCT, but I imagine that she is no longer poor now! This book is pretty popular!

All in all, this is a very well-written memoir. It inspired me to hike the PCT someday, but maybe I will wait until my back gets better. :) 

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Snapfish versus Shutterfly

I dealt with both this week. So, while it is fresh in my mind, I am doing a comparison for ordering prints. Wish I could do it in table form, but I am simply not savvy enough or maybe I am just lazy.

Shutterfly

PROS

1) CUSTOM CROPS - I have gone all over the Internet looking for people who say this is an advantage. To me, that is huge if I have cropped a photo with an other than 4x6 size in my photo editing software and then I try to print them. BOTH Snapfish and Shutterfly print these photos with cut off heads and portions gone and both don't seem to have a mechanism for telling me that the whole image isn't going to be in the print. (Also, both tend to cut off heads and such for prints from my point and shoot too. I think it is because it is from a different aspect ratio). 

BOTH need to notify you to say that things are not going to fit in the frame, but Shutterfly gives you something to do about it with their custom crop tool! I also LOVE that you can make a custom border aroun…

8. Prayer: The Mightiest Force in the World by Frank C. Laubach

In keeping with my prayer emphasis for 2014, here is another gem of a book on prayer written by the same person who wrote The Game with Minutes that I reviewed in January, Frank Laubach. 

It was such a challenge to caste my prayer for world leaders (which was one of my applications from the Prayer Challenge that I am doing from Super Bowl Sunday to Easter). I had a half day in prayer last Friday; and because of this book's reminders, I prayed for the president of Ukraine to step down. Within hours, he fled the country. Now I have to really get on my knees for Putin because he might mess the whole thing up by sending military there. Oh my.

Instead of reinventing the wheel, I am cutting and pasting one person's reflections and quotes from the book:


One of Laubach's most important suggestions in this terrific little book is that we pray during the "chinks" that happen in all of our schedules: while stuck in traffic, doing mindless chores, standing in lines, and so on. …

1. The Game with Minutes by Frank C. Laubach

This is really more a short essay, but it is profound and important. It is one of the best things I have ever read and applying it will change your life. 

This is a reread for me as I have paired it with my reading of Letters by a Modern Mysticby Laubach in the past, but it is good all on its own, and we have our Kingdom training groups read it every time we do this curriculum, and people usually really like it! We pair it with reading The Practice of the Presence of God by Brother Lawrence which I have read on a regular basis over the last 35 years. Laubach was like a modern day Brother Lawrence, but practicing God's presence in the midst of real life rather than in a monastery. 

Here is a PDF download:  of "The Game with Minutes"
(the link I had before was not the whole thing)

Here is also a PDF of Letters by a Modern Mystic:

http://www.dunedin.elim.org.nz/uploads/1/2/7/8/12786940/frank_laubach_-_letters_by_a_modern_mystic.pdf

Here is a helpful summary of it by Dallas Willar…