A Life of Adventure?

Written by Mark Cole

Copyright 2005 Mark Cole

In a conversation recently, a friend remarked to me: “Every man dies, but not every man lives.” If you think about it, that is profoundly true and rather disturbing. I hope that shakes you up like it does me.

You might not be one of those men who are truly alive – not yet anyway. Maybe you need an example, a few words to inspire you, or a life to look at. If so, then you can do a lot worse than examiningrepparttar life of Richard Halliburton.

Richard Haliburton was a man who lived relatively briefly – about 40 years, much of it inrepparttar 141791 period betweenrepparttar 141792 First and Second World Wars. But into those years he packed a lifetime of adventure. He started as soon as he could. The moment he finished at Princeton, he headed to Europe to start a two-year, round-the-world trek. He climbedrepparttar 141793 Matterhorn, took forbidden pictures at Gibraltar, gambled (profitably) in Monte Carlo, spent all night inrepparttar 141794 Taj Mahal, survived thermometer-bursting heat in India and Afghanistan, climbed torepparttar 141795 top ofrepparttar 141796 great pyramids in Egypt, and so on. Later he would swimrepparttar 141797 Hellespont andrepparttar 141798 Panama Canal, march withrepparttar 141799 French Foreign Legion and fly a biplane acrossrepparttar 141800 Sahara. He was arrested on numerous occasions, and even landed in jail a few times, but his crimes were only those fueled by his curiosity, trying to see things which he wasn’t supposed to see and go places he wasn’t supposed to go.

Lots of people make round-the-world trips. But what is endlessly fascinating about Halliburton isrepparttar 141801 transmission of his stories, observations and his motivations to us. Before he died in 1939 (attempting, unsuccessfully, to sail acrossrepparttar 141802 Pacific in a Chinese junk), he wrote half a dozen books, hundreds of articles and, most importantly, more than a thousand letters to his parents. In his amazing writing – amazing in quantity and in beauty and insight and humor – he displays an appropriate awe of nature together with a deep appreciation ofrepparttar 141803 achievements ofrepparttar 141804 pinnacle of God’s creation, man.

Often Halliburton encounters conditions which were (to put it mildly) uncomfortable and people who were (from his vantage point) unusual. But at no point does he criticize, complain or moan. Rather, he exudes a quintessentially American optimism, a modest cheerfulness, a genuine belief inrepparttar 141805 decency of many of his fellow man, a passion for seeingrepparttar 141806 world and its variety of people. He recognizes that for all that separates him fromrepparttar 141807 Dyak tribespeople in Bornea, he sees that they, above all else, love children and cannot have enough of them. He expresses admiration forrepparttar 141808 simplicity and gentleness ofrepparttar 141809 people ofrepparttar 141810 tiny mountain country Andorra and has tea with their President, by a fire inrepparttar 141811 living room ofrepparttar 141812 Andorran White House.

Through all of his adventures, Halliburton remains cheerful, exuberant, charming and full of wonder. And he never takes himself too seriously. In fact,repparttar 141813 most uproariously funny passages in his writings are where his inexperience and a faraway place collide. Take, for example, his account of an (unsuccessful) panther hunt in India: “…I fired. One could have heardrepparttar 141814 rifle’s roar in Calcutta. The recoil knocked me completely…out ofrepparttar 141815 tree. I thudded torepparttar 141816 ground on one side,repparttar 141817 bearer on another, andrepparttar 141818 elephant gun onrepparttar 141819 third. In three terrified leapsrepparttar 141820 panther was back inrepparttar 141821 jungle. I had not killed him, and my self-condemnation knew no bounds. To investigaterepparttar 141822 possibility of a blood-trailrepparttar 141823 bearer and I walked over torepparttar 141824 carcass [of a deer killed byrepparttar 141825 panther], and found that instead of slayingrepparttar 141826 panther inrepparttar 141827 best accredited Daniel Boone style, I had shot a large hole straight throughrepparttar 141828 ample side ofrepparttar 141829 dead calf. My humiliation was so touching, Doctor Lap on his return arranged for a real hunt withrepparttar 141830 idea of giving me a chance to redeem myself.”

Even his final transmission fromrepparttar 141831 Sea Dragon is hardly a distressed call for help, but a string of cheerful, common sense observations: “Southerly gales, squalls, lee rail under water, wet bunks, hard tack, bully beef, wish you were here—instead of me!”

For all of his decency, Halliburton is a bit harder on folks back home. The Royal Road to Romance begins with this:

“I looked behind me at my four [Princeton] roommates bent over their desks dutifully grubbing their lives away. John frowned into his public accounting book; he was soon to enter his father’s department store. Penfield yawned over an essay on corporate finance; he planned to sell bonds. Larry was absorbed in protoplasms; his was to be a medical career. Irving (he dreamed sometimes) was struggling unsuccessfully to keep his mind on constitutional government. What futility it all was—stuffing themselves with profitless facts and figures, whenrepparttar 141832 vital andrepparttar 141833 beautiful things of life –repparttar 141834 moonlight,repparttar 141835 apple orchards,repparttar 141836 out-of-door sirens—were calling and pleading for recognition.”

The Outside Counts, Too

Written by Debbie O'Meara

A couple of years ago, I decided that cycling sounded like a good hobby. I bought a bike and one Saturday morning put on a t-shirt and shorts and lugged my bike out torepparttar meeting place of a local cycling club.

What a surprise I got when I showed up and everyone else there was in full cycling gear — jersey, bike shorts, shoes,repparttar 141737 whole thing. I felt intimidated and nervous. Sure, I knew how to ride a bike, and I was in pretty good shape, but how could I keep up with these people, who obviously knew what they were doing?

I was plenty insecure at first. But I stuck with it, and after a while gotrepparttar 141738 shorts, andrepparttar 141739 jerseys, and evenrepparttar 141740 special shoes that clip ontorepparttar 141741 special pedals. I looked like I fit in.

Now, I’m a fairly strong rider, but I’m not very fast. It’s often a struggle to keep up withrepparttar 141742 group.

But onlyrepparttar 141743 group knows that. When I go out for a solo ride, I put on my jersey and shorts and shoes and pedal along at my less-than-breakneck pace. But when I pass people in shorts and t-shirts (and I do!) I know what I look like to them. Like I know what I’m doing. And they treat me that way, just because that’srepparttar 141744 impression I’m giving onrepparttar 141745 outside.

They don’t know that I’m a little slower than my friends. They just know I look like a “real” cyclist, so they assume I am one. In their eyes, I am.

We know from our studying that prosperity is largely an inside job. We manifest it onrepparttar 141746 outside based on what we think onrepparttar 141747 inside. Butrepparttar 141748 outside counts too. I convince people onrepparttar 141749 street that I’m a cyclist based on what I wear. But that’s only while I’m cycling. What does my day-to-day appearance tellrepparttar 141750 universe - and myself – about who I am?

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