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  • Writer's pictureMichael Kennedy

Tell Me A Story

Updated: Sep 27, 2023

William James wrote that in childhood, experiences are novel and distinct but in adulthood "each passing year converts some of this experience into automatic routine which we hardly note at all, the days and weeks smooth themselves out in recollection, and the years grow hollow and collapse."

Seems a bit morbid... So let me take another approach.

This is a story about noticing something new in the mundane. Finding novelty not by doing outrageous things, but by leaping more courageously into the life you already have.

This story is about experiencing your life with twice the passion and drawing your attention more fully into the here and now.

Novel experiences are easy as a child, but as we get older and take on increasing responsibilities with work, family, and community, these experiences understandably become less frequent. This is why time seems to fly as we get older: we get caught up in the thick of thin things... in the routine of things.

Join me for a few minutes on a walk and a visual story. Let's slow the clocks down. Let's walk through the thick stuff and notice with twice the intensity things we may be taking for granted. Let's get a dose of novelty and let Nature minister to us on a hike in Olympic Valley, CA. Sound good?

As we begin our hike, the sun rises, parting the trees, melting the mountains, and splitting the valley like wax before the fire. The surreal beauty makes us reconsider the thought that all this could actually exist by mere accident. From KT22 we enjoy the view of Olympic Valley, just as the Hawks and Eagles do.

Then, as we begin our ascent up Granite Chief trail, we feel the wind on our skin. We hear the rush of the creek. We see the sway of shrubs and the tremble of Alpine leaves. There's a distinct melody at play and a giant conductor is before us with a thousand arms making it as inspiring as possible.

Mother Nature is a reflection of the stories we tell ourselves. One minute we feel Her beauty coursing through our veins. The next minute we feel the haunting sense of being watched by a sinister eye. It's as if our darkest secrets are being tabulated and judged for some existential indictment.

As long as the story lingers in our mind, the real things become more real.

Juniper Trees become beacons of hope, a refuge for our troubles and insecurities. Our protectors. Their existence a model of strength, perseverance, endurance, and beauty.

Gradually, with a swelling continuity, we realize there is no old wise man sitting on top of these mountains, but instead the wisdom of Nature, inspiring us to make the immediate real more real. The mundane less mundane. The novelty more novel.

Make the novelty work in your favor. Fill your time with rich and memorable experiences. The real beauty comes back to us more savory for having been dipped in our story. Look, really look, for the new in the mundane - whether it's in Olympic Valley or anywhere else. Consciously consider the story you tell yourself on your next walk through Nature.

Thanks for joining me. Until next time.


Hello! I’m Michael Kennedy, Olympic Valley, CA resident. I’m a premium ghostwriter and photographer. Thanks for reading. If you enjoyed it, please share with others. I value your attention, it means a lot to me and it helps others see the story. If you're interested in any awe-inspired photos in this post, or in my gallery: click here, or just call or text at 530.608.9150. Let me know what size you want, and I'll send a quote. My email:

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