Each day I go a-wandering

I love to go a-wandering,
Along the mountain track,
And as I go, I love to sing,
My knapsack on my back.
My knapsack on my back.
I love to wander by the stream
That dances in the sun,
So joyously it calls to me,
"Come! Join my happy song!"
I wave my hat to all I meet,
And they wave back to me,
And blackbirds call so loud and sweet
From ev'ry green wood tree.
High overhead, the skylarks wing,
They never rest at home
But just like me, they love to sing,
As o'er the world we roam.
Oh, may I go a-wandering
Until the day I die!
Oh, may I always laugh and sing,
Beneath God's clear blue sky!

Late to bed and late to rise,
Can it be that Poor Richard lies?

Well … perhaps lie is a too strong word for Benj. Franklin’s homily.  I have spent most of my life working outside the normal diurnal cycles of life.  I washed dishes in the evenings as I was going through High School, and worked as a bartender much of my early adulthood.

Often the regular night shifts were accompanied by working part time during the day as well.  It wasn’t that I was all that ambitious.  I just enjoyed long vacations and often left my jobs after a year or two and went awandering.

I have always had wanderlust, though marriage has certainly put a damper on it.  I had a reputation as a runaway as a kid, but it wasn’t because I had a mean home.  I just wanted to know what was going on in the world beyond my view.

It got me into many minor brushes with the law, usually for vagrancy and hanging out.  As Paul Simon so put it; “seeking out the poorer quarters where the ragged people go, seeking out the places only they would know.”

But marriage put an end to the wandering.  At first I chaffed under the leash, and that caused a lot of problems with a first marriage.  But by the second marriage, life had pretty much beaten some sense into me, and I remained at home and vicariously scratched my itch from time to time with short day trips that I kept quiet.

Ever so often I just have to see something I have never seen before.

Snookums hasn’t an ounce of wanderlust in her.  Houses and mortgages, pets and gardens are her forte, and in her mind, all decent people should be that way if they aren’t.  And I am softly but relentlessly pushed into adopting that view

Lately, my feet have started itching again.  (Relax, family.  I am going nowhere.)  I sat down at the diner of a nearby truck stop for coffee and listened to the freight and long-haul drivers banter back and forth.  I miss living in my truck for weeks at a time, and waking to a new view each morning.  I love the rumble of a diesel engine idling in winter while I caught 40 winks in a remote pull-out.  I miss not knowing my way around countless cities.

I am thinking this day of running down to the city (Austin) for some Kosher items, and stopping by Sheppler’s for a western sheepskin jacket and new hat.  I plan for the trip with care, putting the way points into my GPS for retrieval and wonder at my careful planning.  How many times have I left Colorado with a load of boxed beef bound for an unknown address on the East Coast?  I have grown so cautious in my dotage.

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