Tag Archive: Adventure

Tennessee Summer Summery


“Fun Run” Trip with fellow guides.

This summer I had intended to post more, however, that was before I realized the demand of work, the time spent with friends, and all the writing that I was doing (outside of blogs).  Whatever I thought this summer was going to be like, it was not, it was much, much, more!

Life in the South was something that I had never known before, sure, everyone hears different things about “down yonder”, but hearing about it, and actually knowing are two different things.  If you know anything about me, you will know that hearing about something is not going to be enough for me, I have to know myself.

That doesn’t mean that I didn’t go into this summer with some presuppositions, wrong presuppositions, but premeditated judgement nonetheless.  I assumed that everyone listened to country music, that people were more concerned with their farms than they were with relationships, people would be less educated in the country than in the cities, and that everyone was conservative when it came to religious and social beliefs.

Although some of those presuppositions proved to be more true than up here in the North (people in general are more conservative down South), people down below were more understanding and accepting than I had experienced before.  Being an openly gay man, I was not going to go back in the closet as I headed to my summer destination, and try to hide my sexual identity down there.  I was afraid though, that when people figured out I was gay, that I would be lynched, or some equally terrible, violent act, and would be leaving within the first two weeks.  After all, I would have given it a shot, no one could have told me I didn’t at least try.

Instead?  I met some of the coolest, nicest, most self-educated people of my life.  I grew in ways that I am sure I won’t realize for years to come.  Instead of listening to country music (which I ironically discovered I liked), I got to listen to new music (Daft Punks new album, Pretty Lights new album, White Panda, STS9) .  I didn’t find people more concerned with their farms, quite the opposite actually, this summer I had to try and find time to spend alone.  We were all such a social outgoing group, that none of us wanted to miss out on any of the fun, spending all our time together.  Education turned out not to be a problem, most of my friends were in college, had been, or were already graduated.  For the ones that hadn’t gone to school, were self read, and could keep intellectual debates going all night, as we often  did.

The summer was a remarkable time, I expected the worst, and was quite honestly given the best.  Moral of the story?  Discover for yourself, don’t judge a book by its cover.


The easy going South

While being down here in the South, I realized up North we are a very hurried folk. We walk quickly, talk fast, and expect results, now. But down here in the South, things move slower. Maybe its the heat and humidity (which in itself is something foreign to my warm dry summers in Maine), or maybe down here in “The Dirty” people want to take time to really appreciate life.

Not to say that up North people don’t appreciate life, the lazy going South isn’t for everyone, just as the rush of the North isn’t meant for all. I just appreciate the differences.

I am constantly writing about how it hasn’t felt that long that I’ve been here, 22 days, but already our small summer family of 80 or so are close and friendly. We all have similar outlooks on life, to the point its almost eerie, which I believe is the reason why we all fit so well. We are also all knowledgeable in so many different ways, we will sit and just talk for hours!

To some, the front porch living of the slow moving south is underwhelming, but this is a high energy and demanding job, yet it feels like vacation at the same time, with plenty of down time and chill people to hang out with. In other words, its a perfect job.  But I will say, its not for everyone!