Most Recent Posts

The Man Who Planted Trees: New Transcription

October 5, 2015
Experiential EducationFilms

This animated adaptation of my favorite short reading, “The Man Who Planted Trees” by Jean Giono, won an academy award in 1987. In my opinion, the translation is the best out there: similar to the most common one, but more accessible in its English. A transcript wasn’t available online, so this morning, I transcribed it to include in my readings packet for the field. I hope you enjoy it!

Many years ago, I set out on a walking tour high in the Alps, a region quite unknown to travelers where ancient mountains thrust down into Provence. The trek began on barren moors twelve or thirteen hundred meters above sea level through land that was bleak and monotonous. Nothing grew there but wild lavender. My route led across Continue reading >>

How Would I Know?

September 28, 2015

I’ve been telling people all summer
about a tradition I’ve heard of.

In some Australian and American cultures,
nobody celebrates birthdays.
Instead, when they’ve reached
a new stage in life,
become a new and better version of themselves,
they take on a new name.

And I ask,
how would I know when it’s time?
Which questions would I need to ask?
Continue reading >>

Films for Fall in the West

August 23, 2015
Experiential EducationFilms

In working fall semesters for NOLS, students have the privilege to explore some of my most loved places: backpacking in the the Wind River Range, boating on desert rivers, and canyoneering on Cedar Mesa in southern Utah. This is a short selection of films I’ve been showing students this fall (and watching myself) for inspiration about upcoming adventures.

The Important Places

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Letter To A Former Student

August 23, 2015
Experiential EducationIndia

I have been examining in myself the same question you asked me: how to keep the experience alive. While I certainly don’t have the answers I hope I can offer some ideas. To start, I think that the question you ask might not be the right question. I think that it’s very common question to ask for anybody who has just lived one of the biggest (if not the biggest) adventures Continue reading >>

July in the Wind River Range with NOLS

August 15, 2015

On Blaurock Pass, Gannett Peak behind

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June in the Wind River Range

July 12, 2015

Backside of Cirque of the Towers

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Monument Valley Sky

June 6, 2015

Cedar Mesa Sandstone Reflection

Train Rock and Monument Valley

Photos from Ladakh

May 11, 2015

Likir Valley Trek

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On Sacredness

April 10, 2015

I have a strange love for leaving places. I love the nostalgia. I love the feeling of starting new things and the feeling that the world is bigger than I can imagine. I even have special music that I listen to when I’m getting everything ready to go. Last night, Van Morrison sang “Into The Mystic” from a portable speaker as I stuffed the last shirts into my backpack and searched the instructor flat for anything I might have forgotten. When all my things were packed though, something was still unfinished though. I needed to say goodbye. Not goodbye to Continue reading >>

Am I A Buddhist?

March 23, 2015

On the final night of the 10-day Buddhist retreat in Bodh Gaya, I walk with five students to the Bodhi Tree. On an ordinary day about two thousand six hundred years ago, Siddhartha Gautama sat down to meditate under this tree and made a vow not to move until he had realized the answers to life’s biggest questions. Seven weeks later, he arose Continue reading >>

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