When Hemingway was 29 years old, his young life in Paris ended. On a warmer than usual March night, after too much wine and absinthe, Hemmie made his way into the shared bathroom down the hall from his bedroom on the rue Mouffetard, and, not bothering to turn on the light, after relieving himself, confused the flush chord for the chord of a skylight which quickly came crashing down on his head.
His record of past injuries and maladies at the hospital that night would have read as such: multiple cuts to the right eye, gorged tonsils, internal hemorrhaging, third degree burns from a water heater, kidney trouble, hand injury from punching through a glass case, broken arm in a car crash, groan muscles torn during a bull run, laceration from a charging horse, torn ligament in his right foot, anthrax, malaria, hemorrhoids, broken toe from kicking a door, jaundice, and a self-inflicted gunshot wound that happened while fishing.
These are just a few of the scraps and bruises Hemingway picked up before his thirtieth birthday. And this trend continued, until, well, the story ended.
What’s your list? What do your scars say about the way you lived, how fiercely you’ve done so?
I’ve always liked camping. I’ve gone my entire life, and each time, I’ve needed a cooler full of food, pots and pans, a five gallon jug of water, changes of clothes, sandals and boots, A GIANT TENT, sleeping bags, mosquito repellent, you get the idea. When I go camping, I go prepared. But right now, and this is new in my life, I think I’m ready to be much, much more uncomfortable. Next camping trip, nothing but a bottle of absinthe and an endless sky of stars.