“Charles Darwin and Emma Wedgwood fell in love but, ever a man of method, he drew up two lists, one called ‘marry’, one called ‘not marry’, and he worked through the pros and cons. He concluded that ‘a constant companion and a friend in old age’ outweighed ‘less money for books and the terrible loss of time’.”—From In Our Time by Melvyn Bragg
“In 1885 Senator Henry Dawes made a tour of Indian reservations in Oklahoma and delivered his report to the Lake Mohonk Conference – an annual gathering of influential whites who called themselves “friends of the Indian”, and were dedicated to advancing their red brethren towards white civilisation. The senator brought dispiriting news: “There is no selfishness, which is at the bottom of civilisation.” The tribes were still living within communal social structures. They were still sharing all their food and possessions with their kinfolk. They were more impressed by displays of generosity than the accumulation of private wealth.
“We need to awaken in him [the Indian] wants,” said another conferencee. “In his dull savagery he must be touched by the wings of the divine angel of discontent… Discontent with the teepee and the starving rations of the Indian camp in winter is needed to get the Indian out of the blanket and into trousers – and trousers with a pocket in them, and with a pocket that aches to be filled with dollars! … this is the first great step in the education of the race.””—From American Nomads by Richard Grant
“We do not go to the green woods and crystal waters to rough it, we go to smooth it. We get it rough enough at home; in towns and cities; in shops, offices, stores, banks anywhere that we may be placed with the necessity always present of being on time and up to our work; of providing for the dependent ones; of keeping up, catching up, or getting left.”—George W. Sears aka Nessmuk from “Woodcraft and Camping”
As my family and I prepare to move back to the States, I’ve been contemplating what I want out of my life in terms of work. Fifteen years ago, I followed the usual path of my generation when I graduated college and slipped into the normal 9 to 5, 40 hour a week routine. My current job has changed this up a bit by introducing a lot of time on the road. It’s been fantastic visiting places I never thought or expected I’d see in life like Paris, Munich, Dublin, Amsterdam, Antwerp, Dubai, etc. That’s come at a high price though as I away from my wife and son much more than I would prefer.