I can’t remember if I mentioned here that I am accompanying the 10th graders on their class trip to Boston next month. I’m really looking forward to it, especially since I found out that Evan, the Experiential Educator in charge of class trips like this and Judaics instructor extraordinaire, arranged for us to visit Walden.
I am not sure when I first read Walden, but I know that it has been profoundly influential over my outlook in life. I can’t claim to have simplified much of anything, but I have lain in the grass and watched the ants — and I wrote a poem about it that I’ve lost over the years. I’ve found perfect oneness with God by the side of a small lake in the woods and in the music of a babbling creek on a mountaintop. I relate to Thoreau, and sometimes I’ve wished I could be a bit more like him.
I wonder what it will be like to actually walk in his footsteps.
Then again, it sounds like the highlight of the trip, at least for one of my students, will be seeing the Blue Man Group. Maybe, though… maybe they’ll get it. Maybe they’ll breathe it in the air and feel it through the soles of their feet.
I learned this, at least, by my experiment;
that if one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams,
and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined,
he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.
–from the “Conclusion” to Walden
Trivia #6: How much did Thoreau spend when he built his cabin near Walden Pond?
Answer: $28.12 1/2