Sunday, 29 September 2013

The Call of the Wild

When the rain pelts the flysheet, what better than to slot in the ear-plugs and listen to a book by the likes of adventurer, gambler, and raconteur Jack London. 

"And not only did he learn by experience, but instincts long dead became alive again. The domesticated generations fell from him. In vague ways he remembered back to the youth of the breed, to the time the wild dogs ranged in packs through the primeval forest and killed their meat as they ran it down.
  It was no task for him to learn to fight with cut and slash and the quick wolf snap. In this manner had fought forgotten ancestors. They quickened the old life within him, and the old tricks which they had stamped into the heredity of the breed were his tricks. They came to him without effort or discovery, as though they had been his always.
  And when, on the still cold nights, he pointed his nose at a star and howled long and wolflike, it was his ancestors, dead and dust, pointing nose at star and howling down through the centuries and through him. And his cadences were their cadences, the cadences which voiced their woe and what to them was the meaning of the stiffness, and the cold, and dark."
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And of course you could dream of re-treading the book's Yukon tracks by racing the 352 miles of the extreme winter marathon like my personal trainer Brian Brown.

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