Sometimes I will spend an evening on the back porch, looking up at a sky that could cause an atheist to believe in God. In the mountains on a clear night, away from the amber-pink glow of the city lights, stars come out and shine brilliantly. Nights like these also signal a cold morning, but I will take that weight in order to sit under a cloudless sky and let the minutes fall away.

Life has continued. My job keeps me busy, on my toes, and occasionally teeters me over an edge, pulls me back before I fall, dusts me off, and gives me a shove in the right direction. A new car gives me something to look at: a cut stone that provides pleasure. The weather grows warmer, dips into cold, stumbles, changes its mind. The sun comes up, the sun goes down.

And I think about my future, about not knowing where I am going. There was a time when everything that was going to happen was certain; all I had to do was sit back and let it happen. I've since learned that sitting back and waiting was perhaps the biggest mistake I ever made. The future is not a straight line, and it will not catch up with you. If you are complacent, the future may simply bitch-slap you on its way by, demonstrating the Doppler effect as it screams past. How fast? The speed of sound? The speed of light? As far as I can tell, the speed of life doesn’t have a measure; there is no way to comfort oneself by mapping or drawing diagrams. My life ain't a pie chart.

Ah, this late night gibberish.

My time is spread out before me, not unlike my late mountain night sky. I don't care how clichéd of a metaphor that is, I'm gonna use it anyway. There is nothing more liberating that realizing that you are free to do what you choose, to carry that weight, to fire yourself into the world like a roman candle, aiming for a place among the stars. I'm still young enough to see the romance in travel, to find meaning in jumping in a car, pointing the nose in a cardinal direction, and just driving. I'm not looking for anything specific, but I know, if I drive long enough and stay true to my route, that I will eventually end up exactly where I want to be.

I never claimed to be an anti-romantic.

I think I'm gonna go look at the stars a little more before I go to bed.