I am not a fan of Safe queens, I don’t have many collectibles, and if I can’t use it in the most applicable fashion, then I don’t want it. This applies to most things in my life, but to my hunting equipment there is a special reason.
It’s not that I like to be hard on things, I just take pride and security knowing me and my gear can take it. For those that know me well, I’m not much for organizing, or cleanliness. Yet oddly enough I am a bit of a cleanie, and a germaphobe, it’s a weird combination to behold I must admit.
There is a strange phenomenon that happens when I retreat into the wilderness though. Cleanliness seems to fall by the wayside, and almost like a savage from centuries passed, I find myself elbow deep in blood and other less desirables. It’s certainly not the joy in having taken a life, but something much deeper. There is a profound connection with success and the palpable sign that goes with it. I have long enjoyed the images of success, that most often for me are filthy. Dirty guns, bloody hands, worn gear showing signs of hard use, it all reminds me of the amazing adventures that brought them to this condition. The header photograph of this piece, is one of my most favorite pictures of all time. It doesn’t have anything particularly special, but the memory it draws from my mind takes me back to that sub zero sunset.
The fading light seemed to suck both the heat and the sound from around me, almost as if it had opened a hole into the vacuum of space. The bite of the ice crusted around my fingers, was so contrasted by the soothing warmth of blood. I felt an incredible feeling of loneliness, and exhaustion, but I had also never felt so alive.
The filth and grit that accompany success often take time to wash out, but so do the marvelous memories that come with them. I am very grateful for that, memories are sometimes all we have. And were it not for a stained picture, or heavily worn pack, that beautiful memory might slip away into the chasm of the forgotten.