The Old Man On The Mountain

A View From the Backwoods of NH

Who is The Old Man

Life in the White Mountains of New Hampshire, or “The Great White North” as I call it (kudos to Bob and Doug McKenzie) is probably the most peaceful existence I could ask for. After escaping a relationship that was draining both my sanity and my will to go on, the solitude of the mountains and the people here have been a welcome respite. It reminds me of my youth, where people still have manners and there’s “a little room” between neighbors. With that said, here’s something I wrote when I first moved here – an “introduction” to The Old Man –

Well, they say today is the first day of the rest of your life. If you like change, that can apply to each and every day. Me, I’m old-school. I like change when it makes life (or your job) easier, and while “the way we do things now” has always been a time-proven method of the best way we’ve found to do something, keeping an open mind is one of the keys to life. But “change for changes sake” (or someone’s personal agenda) is not for me.

It seems so long ago that a solid work ethic and stick-to-it-tiveness were common. When I look back at what my parent’s generation gave us compared to what my generation has brought to the table, I see a lot of laziness on our end of things. But then, we didn’t live through a “depression”, enhanced by the “dust bowl”. Now that was adversity. Instead, we were taught how to “duck and cover” (the polite way of saying “put your head between your legs and kiss yourself goodbye”) compliments of the Cold War. Their generation introduced us to color tv, a wide variety of appliances, leisure time and a better way of life. Life was good, Mom was always there and all the bad things (murder, rape, etc.) only happened in the big city. And look at what a mess we’ve made of things. But I digress…

Allow me to introduce myself – you can call me The Old Man on the Mountain. Not that I’m all that old (by my standards), but my kids tell me I am, so I must be. And today is the first day of the rest of my life. I live on the side of a mountain, me and my dogs. I’ve spent the better part of my life in the “rat race” working for “corporate”, doing the best I could for my family. I’m pretty much disgusted by the way Corporate America is using its employees, how the government doesn’t stand up for these employees (they just keep upping the H1B’s) and how some Americans are either so self-absorbed that they don’t think twice about “screwing their neighbor” or are so ambivalent that they won’t stand up for their rights. But that’s another story. For now, it’s “Miller Time”, the twilight of my life will be here soon and I’m spending what I’ve got left on me. I know that may sound selfish, but after a lifetime of giving to others, I think I’m entitled. A little bit about me – I love dogs (beware of those that don’t) and I think of my current dogs as my kids. I love my kids too, don’t get me wrong, but the dogs spend ALL their time with me. I like to fish (but I haven’t been in a few years now) and I think friends are the “family you get to choose”.

So, I loaded up the truck and moved North, bought a place on the side of a mountain, near towns that epitomize what I’ve loved most about life – neighborly, mannerly and close-knit. It took me a long time to get here, but so far it’s been worth the wait. I left a lot behind – friends, family, a long term relationship right out of “Married with Children” and a Company that would give Dilbert fodder for life. But this is where I want to spend the rest of my days – working, fishing, enjoying nature, making new friends and whatever else comes my way.

After all, it’s the first day of the rest of my life…