Wild, by Cheryl Strayed

Just a month ago, I wrote about my fascination with journeys of self-discovery, pilgrimages, and the like – inspiration also fuelled by the film "Wild." Almost immediately after publishing the blog post, I picked up the book of the same name by Cheryl Strayed.

The read is quite fascinating. You can really feel it's written by someone who enjoyed every single bit of it. The suffering. The endless hunger. The humility.

Fear, to a great extent, is born of a story we tell ourselves, and so I chose to tell myself a different story from the one women are told. I decided I was safe. I was strong. I was brave. Nothing could vanquish me. Insisting on this story was a form of mind control, but for the most part, it worked.

For a reason, I have more enjoyed the first two-thirds of the book. The parts focused on the demanding toll of such an undertaking, and the part dominated by the feeling of being lost on one's life journey. You can see where this is going. For now. But that's not me saying the rest is not good – quite the opposite.

Cheryl Strayed described the other aspects of hiking – the solitude. While I can't even imagine walking such long stretches out of civilisation, it still has a very familiar feeling. The same reason I start a hike while hoping to meet no-one. But it's the sheer length of the Pacific Crest Trail which leaves someone from Europe in awe.

There’s no way to know what makes one thing happen and not another. What leads to what. What destroys what. What causes what to flourish or die or take another course.

Rating: ★★★★☆ ?

Tags: #book