So – this one time? At band camp? I found myself in a drive through line attempting to buy a coffee when I suddenly realized… “How am I going to order – I CAN’T FREAKIN’ TALK!” Too late. A car pulled up behind me. DOH! I was trapped. “Welcome to the Fast Food place that sells horrible coffee. Can I take your order?” I ignored the person in the speaker, then moved up in line. Only three cars to figure out how I was going to explain to a 16 year old why I didn’t talk and then get them to understand what I’m doing in line without an order. But, thanks to all the times I’ve ordered a coffee late at night in a loud and crowded bar, I NAILED IT!

When I went to the bank, not one, but three tellers wanted to know why I wasn’t my normal chatty self. Even after showing them the note on my phone (explaining that I was in training for a two month silent pilgrimage) they just didn’t get it. “Hope it goes well, whatever it is you’re doing,” is what I heard as I left. Yayyyy – more people rolling their eyes after an encounter with me!
I chose to not do my silent day on Sunday this week because Sunday was the annual Marshall family reunion and the last thing my family needed was another reason to think I’m “different”.

“Oh, that’s just Drew.”

I’m now at the point where the day after, it takes a few hours of hesitation before I stop questioning whether I should talk or not. “Hesitating before talking – what a novel idea. I hear that’s what wise people do.”

Yesterday, I talked with Aron Ralston Speaker . He’s the guy James Franco played in the movie 127 Hours. He’s also they guy who, while canyoning in the middle of nowhere, had to drink his own urine just to survive because no one knew where he was and he was trapped. His arm had become lodged between a boulder that had fallen and the rock wall he was climbing down. Eventually, Aron had to hack his own arm off with a dull pocket knife. (Let’s not forget – he also had to snap the bones as well.) While I am certainly not wanting anything like that to happen to me while walking the 800KM Camino Trail, there’s something about his experience that makes me envious. Being forced to face my own mortality, my purpose, experiencing a profound moment that will shake my priorities and attitudes to the core – is probably exactly what my dry and cracked soul needs. (Queue melodramatic music!)

“What are your boulders Drew? What are you willing to sacrifice in order to free yourself?” – Aron Rolsten

Spiritual Benefit During My 11th Day Of Silence = 1.7/10 (That’s .7 of a point better than last week!)

Here’s Aron, back at THE rock, recounting exactly what happened.

Check out the trailer for 127 Hours and then WATCH IT!

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