Saturday, January 14, 2012


Do you have any idea how many stories there are in this huge world?  How many compelling, unbelievable stories there are out there?  'Cause I sure don't know.  It has to be a ton of stories.   I was in New York City twice late last year.  New York is the closest I get to experiencing massive humanity.  This time around, while visiting NY, i had the most profound sense of the sheer numbers of people on earth.  So many people.  Somewhat shallowly and selfishly, it occurred to me there "why don't some of these people fly to California to climb mountains with me?"  Turns out, right around the turn of the new year, I had the pleasure of guiding three NY residents here in the Sierra on two separate trips.  Over a combined total of five days i had the pleasure of learning a little bit of the life stories of three of the millions of people living in New York City. 
Over Christmas I got to know much of Alex's family. Interestingly enough, many of them have their own connections to the New York metro area.  What was more striking, however, was the pile of stories these people carry around with them.  I feel so blessed to learn and hear the life stories of people.  Each and every time there is something amazing or inspiring or sad or beautiful or scary in someone's story.  Without fail, each person i meet is incredibly interesting.  Now, i am no expert on statistics or extrapolation, but that would lead me to believe that the world has almost 7 billion amazing life stories motoring ahead right now.  And tens of billions wrapped up in the past.  What a concept! 
And how humbling.  Nothing is new, nothing is special, everything has happened already to someone else.  We can be sure that someone else has more opportunity, taller hurdles, crazier family, more bitter sadness, stronger will, greater skill and  deeper peace.  Our stories are our world.  But our world includes a dizzying array of other stories, marching on. 

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