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Re: [pct-l] Way back when ... (continued)

FWIW, here is a discussion of my Plan B.  Each of us has their own.  Skip
this if it hasn't occurred to you yet.

For those not following this, Plan A is what you have chosen to do now.
Plan B is what your dreaming about doing if the priorities of Plan A weren't
so damn important.

For example, Plan A is:  I am married, four kids, one more on the way,
house, cars, suburbs, soccer, working in LA, commuting 60 miles roundtrip,
making a pretty good living, hoping for the big payoff, backpacking and
camping maybe 15 to 20 days per year.  (oh NOOOO!!! I've become one of THOSE
kind of people!!)

Plan B:  Single, no kids, cabin in the mountains, low intensity job (NFS
forest ranger, school teacher, mountain guide?) that doesn't mind me taking
off for 3 months or more at a time, walk or ride my bike to work,
backpacking and camping 3 to 6 months per year.

By the way, my dear friend Jeff Z comes pretty close to this and I fondly
refer to him (mostly behind his back) as my "Plan B" friend.

At the same time that I am dreaming of my Plan B, I also fully recognize
that the grass is always greener on the other side of the hill.  I have
chosen to maintain a great relationship with a great woman.  I enjoy my
children every day and work hard to provide the opportunities that will
offer their own Plan B to each of them.  I am thrilled that they see the
excitement in my eyes upon venturing out into the wilderness and
enthusiastically join me in my quests for adventure, however simple or
intense.  And I hope to be passing that enthusiasm onto their children.  I
know that I will always have a son or daughter or grandson or granddaughter
to join me in the mountains in the years to come.  My Plan B could not
possibly offer any of these values that I hold so high.

In that light it becomes apparent that my Plan B is, in essence, a fantasy.
I happen to enjoy reveling in the "what if's" of my fantasy, knowing that I
passed the trail junction long ago that would have taken me down that path
and instead chose this direction.  No regrets.

Monte, I'm sure you crossed a similar junction, but it sounds as though you
have found your own great mixture of my two plans.  I would be interested in
your thoughts.  Paul Hacker, who is in a very similar family situation to
mine, and I have several discussions on this.

We are planning a repeat thruhike "sometime" in the future.  It may happen,
it may not.  Isn't fantasizing fun?

It occurs to me that when I had heard for the first time about the PCT, I
was in college and had not thought about my preferred Plan A much.  I chose
to make the PCT a priority over the objections and doubts about my sanity of
close friends and family.  I switched from my poorly defined (at the time)
Plan A to a Plan B, thruhiking the PCT.  I recognized that it was a
temporary switch.  My parents opposed it, fearing that it would become a
permanent switch.  I argued that if I found values and a lifestyle that
caused me to permanently vary from my previous Plan A, then so be it!  I
then would simply be doing what I valued the most and how can you argue that
with someone?

As it turned out, the thruhike only gave me the time to clearly think out my
priorities, values and interests, and therefore, solidify my Plan A into
sharp focus.  I have been living it ever since.

I would like to hear other list member's Plan A's and Plan B's.

Best regards from just an old washed up, has-been,

Greg "Strider" Hummel

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