There are so many hidden places in these mountains. Many of them have the steel ribbon that carries the coal but the general public will never see where they go or known precisely where they end. But today I took a diversion from my normal path out to one of places that these tracks eventually lead. The connect with multiple places, but one of them leads to a place where I spent my one and only day working on a strip mine. I was 18 years old and was working under the table so I’ll not out the person who gave me that experience more than 30 years ago. The mine was opening new ground and needed a strong back to carry bags of explosives to the holes. I wasn’t alone and together with a few friends we unloaded and carried what I estimated to be a ton of bags to where the engineers were setting the charges. At the end of the day when they did the blast we watched from a couple of miles away. The shock wave hit us twice. Once when it arrived from the blast site and then when it bounced off the mountain behind us. It was an thrilling experience that I’ll never forget. But today when I drove to the blast site ( as close as I could get without trespassing) the tracks where rusted and overgrown. The mine shut down long ago and the trains have no need to go there anymore. But the tracks on the end where I took the pictures are shiny and well maintained. The coal is still running but it’s coming from a different source. So on one hand the tracks go to my past and on the other hand they go to a future I’m not connected to.
Looking down the tracks and knowing that they’re only a few switches away from prosperity or despair it would be easy to become overwhelmed by potential for a bad end. But today, today I live. Sure, we need to plan ahead and be active in creating the future but all we really have is moment we live in.
My final thought for tonight is to remind myself that I can’t be so intimidated the potential for disaster that I look back to find that I’ve lost all my moments to fear and trepidation. Today I live. Not yesterday or tomorrow but today. Prepare for the future but don’t wait until it’s here to act. Respect the past but learn to let it go. And take time to appreciate the moment that you have.
Good night friends and be blessed throughout your days.
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