I stood at the base of the minuscule mountain, about a ten minute, backroad car ride from my house. The mountain was bare as a majority of the trees had shed their leaves and no white was sprinkled on the summit, unlike Squaw, which I visited last weekend–I was back in Pennsylvania after all. The trail up to the top was covered with crumbled, faded leaves and overgrown tall grass. I typically take the longer, windier route to the top, but on this fall day, I opted for the tunnel-like, straight shoot. This route was fresh to me, akin to most experiences in my life now.
Although once I reached the rustic, green ski lift platform at the top, I realize I’ve completed this trip countless times. The hike is fairly short, about twenty minutes, and it’s pleasant to be outside, but one can only visit the same spot so many times. With that, it’s becoming more and more apparent that my time to move on from my hometown is imminent. A new phase of my life awaits, and it is time to seize it.
Moreover, my parents are also nudging me in that direction–or simply to acquire a job. I’ve resided in my hometown long enough for me to notice the changes. There’s a new crop of people in my neighborhood, as well as the gym I attend. At this point, all of my friends have moved away–with Eric landing a job in New York a few weeks ago. With that, the beginning of the new year seems to be the most appropriate time to pack up my belongings and get trucking, most likely to California.
Packs of vultures soared above me as I strided down the mountain. I kept glancing up at these elevated predators, somewhat concerned one may take a run at me, unlikely though, of course. It was apparent most of their prey had either sunk into hibernation or fled town completely–seems like everyone has that idea nowadays.