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“When I was shaking out at the hueco, I didn’t have any running thoughts aside from what is happening in that present moment: how my body feels, what my breathing is like, just how I’m feeling right then. I definitely felt pumped and my fingers were cold. I had those thoughts, but more as statement of fact and not a worried ‘Oh no, I’m pumped!’ There was no emotion whatsoever; it was super-mechanical. I turned into this machine."

Nina Williams on the ascent of Amborsia, Bishop

“I can't always be in the wild. Sometimes I have to be in places that smell of fear, fumes, and ambition. When I'm there it helps very much to know that badgers are asleep inside a Welsh hill, that an otter is turning over stones in one of the Rockford pools, that a fox is blinking in the same sun that makes me sweat in my tweed coat, that a red stag is cutting amongst ghost trees by a stone circle near Hoar Oak, and that there's a swift hatched above my Oxford study hunting almost beyond human sight in the high, hot blue over the Congo River. That these things should be a comfort is strange. They should taunt, not comfort. They should say, ‘you're not there—ha, ha, ha’. Why does that not happen? Well, I note that I get a similar sense of comfort only from being assured of the continued existence of things, and notably people, that, whatever love is, I love. Perhaps then, whatever love means, I love these creatures.”

Charles Foster
Being a Beast

“It's not the load that breaks you down. It's the way you carry it.”

C.S. Lewis