To Chester Bennington

I was in 6th grade when my cousin let me listen to an album called Hybrid Theory by a band called Linkin Park. I had been previously chastised by a classmate at school for responding “who’s that?” to the question “Do you listen to Linkin Park?” I knew that owning this album was my way of getting in with the cool kids, but I would have to convince my mom first.

My mom’s immediate answer was “no.” My cousin assured her that the songs had no cuss words in them, and after begging, my mom relented and said she would have to listen to the songs first. I excitedly handed the portable CD player over to her, confident of the album's purity. The first song of the album, Papercut, played. She winced as she sat through the heavy drums and electric guitar. Then the vocals came in, and she immediately took off the headphones and declared “the very first word I heard was a cuss word!” I think in her brain the song went something like this:

F*** your parents!
Drop out of school and do drugs!
God is dead! 
Satan reigns!!!

This was before the time of having all the lyrics to every song in your pocket, but I still had that covered: the booklet in the CD case had all the lyrics to the songs. She skimmed through it. There were, in fact, no cuss words.

When I got my own copy, I put it in my CD player and started listening from the beginning. That same song that so terrified my mom started.

Why does it feel like night today?
Something in the air’s not right today
Why do I feel so uptight today?
Paranoia is all I got left

I listened to that album all the way through, enjoying every minute, and so many more times after that.

At that time, the weightier things of the world were not yet on my shoulders. My biggest issues were the girl I had a crush on not talking to me and me feeling lonely, but when I listened to this album that was being sung by a grown man who had deep struggles, I didn’t feel alone. I was about as emotionally immature as a little boy could be, but these songs allowed me to draw out of me that which I didn’t understand. It’s a practice that this album so engrained in me that I still do it today, as a grown man. I listened to Hybrid Theory again today. It still helps, 14 years later.

So thank you, Chester, for helping an 11-year-old Daniel better understand himself. I’m sorry that the weightier things of the world crushed you, like it has so many before you, but I hope that in your life you knew that you helped make that burden a little bit lighter for so many. You will be missed.

When my time comes, forget the wrong that I’ve done
Help me leave behind some reasons to be missed

You certainly did, Chester.

Big Bend: The Outer Mountain Loop

I decided to get more creative with my telling of this adventure and put it in the form of a photo story. All the pictures used were taken on my iPhone and edited in Lightroom. Hover over the picture for the caption. Enjoy!


 The Outer Mountain Loop is the premier trail of Big Bend National Park. It is a 35-mile, 3-day journey, taking you through very diverse terrains and offering the best views in Texas. My friends and I had been training for the couple of months leading up to the trip to ensure we would have the safest and most enjoyable experience possible.  The first part of the trail takes you up the mountain. We took a slight detour to the top of Emory Peak, the highest point in the park, which added a few extra miles. To get to the very tip top of the mountain, you have to scramble up a 20-30 foot rock wall. There is pretty decent cell phone service at the top. I sent a text to my mom to make sure she knew I was okay before we scooted carefully down and hiked back to the main trail.

The Outer Mountain Loop is the premier trail of Big Bend National Park. It is a 35-mile, 3-day journey, taking you through very diverse terrains and offering the best views in Texas. My friends and I had been training for the couple of months leading up to the trip to ensure we would have the safest and most enjoyable experience possible.

The first part of the trail takes you up the mountain. We took a slight detour to the top of Emory Peak, the highest point in the park, which added a few extra miles. To get to the very tip top of the mountain, you have to scramble up a 20-30 foot rock wall. There is pretty decent cell phone service at the top. I sent a text to my mom to make sure she knew I was okay before we scooted carefully down and hiked back to the main trail.

 This is Glenn. He's a goofy guy and was my tent buddy for the trip. After Emory Peak, we proceeded to hike down the mountain, passing through thick forested areas. We were lucky to be in the shade of the mountain the whole time, but the forest came with its own hardships. There were many fallen trees on the trail, and I had a very close call when climbing over one and slipping. My ankle got caught under the tree, but luckily my Solomon boots protected me. The trail eventually started to flatten and clear out, but the first day's hike still seemed like it took forever, despite our quickened pace.

This is Glenn. He's a goofy guy and was my tent buddy for the trip. After Emory Peak, we proceeded to hike down the mountain, passing through thick forested areas. We were lucky to be in the shade of the mountain the whole time, but the forest came with its own hardships. There were many fallen trees on the trail, and I had a very close call when climbing over one and slipping. My ankle got caught under the tree, but luckily my Solomon boots protected me. The trail eventually started to flatten and clear out, but the first day's hike still seemed like it took forever, despite our quickened pace.

 We had already been walking for several hours, and the sun was starting to dip behind the mountain. Jon is looking down the path in hopes of seeing our water cache spot. We were still a few miles away when we spotted a rescue helicopter far in the distance, reminding us that this hike isn't for everybody.  Side note: there are very few, if any, sources of water on the trail, so we had to drive to designated spots and hike in a little bit to the trail and leave jugs of water in designated animal-proof boxes, or we would die. It was recommended we bring one gallon of water per day per person. I carried 6 liters a day, which I would always finish.

We had already been walking for several hours, and the sun was starting to dip behind the mountain. Jon is looking down the path in hopes of seeing our water cache spot. We were still a few miles away when we spotted a rescue helicopter far in the distance, reminding us that this hike isn't for everybody.

Side note: there are very few, if any, sources of water on the trail, so we had to drive to designated spots and hike in a little bit to the trail and leave jugs of water in designated animal-proof boxes, or we would die. It was recommended we bring one gallon of water per day per person. I carried 6 liters a day, which I would always finish.

 We finally arrived at the cache spot and our first campsite, just before sunset. Two park rangers happened to be there to greet us. Their contrasting physical appearances made them look like characters from a sitcom that needs to be made. One was tall, dark, and fit, while the other was shorter, bald, and a little rotund. Despite their comical appearance, the news they brought with them out of the wilderness was sobering. Two hikers suffered from heat exhaustion and had to get airlifted out of the desert. The shade that blessed us so abundantly on the first day would not be with us on Dodson Trail, but we had trained for this. We "cooked" our dry meals, set up camp, and ended what would be the longest leg of the trail, 15 miles.

We finally arrived at the cache spot and our first campsite, just before sunset. Two park rangers happened to be there to greet us. Their contrasting physical appearances made them look like characters from a sitcom that needs to be made. One was tall, dark, and fit, while the other was shorter, bald, and a little rotund. Despite their comical appearance, the news they brought with them out of the wilderness was sobering. Two hikers suffered from heat exhaustion and had to get airlifted out of the desert. The shade that blessed us so abundantly on the first day would not be with us on Dodson Trail, but we had trained for this. We "cooked" our dry meals, set up camp, and ended what would be the longest leg of the trail, 15 miles.

 The sun greeted us the next morning with a rapid rise in temperature. Sixty degrees may sound pretty cold, but it is not when trekking roller coaster hills with no shade while wearing a 40 pound backpack.  This did prove to be the most trying day. The heat caused me to change my zip-off pants into shorts mode, which helps to keep cool but at the cost of having your legs exposed to the angry desert plants. Every plant in Big Bend, except the grass, has thorns or spikes or needles or something sharp and pointy. Every plant. I also took a severe misstep. My Solomon boots saved my ankles yet again, but the strain went straight to my knee.

The sun greeted us the next morning with a rapid rise in temperature. Sixty degrees may sound pretty cold, but it is not when trekking roller coaster hills with no shade while wearing a 40 pound backpack.

This did prove to be the most trying day. The heat caused me to change my zip-off pants into shorts mode, which helps to keep cool but at the cost of having your legs exposed to the angry desert plants. Every plant in Big Bend, except the grass, has thorns or spikes or needles or something sharp and pointy. Every plant. I also took a severe misstep. My Solomon boots saved my ankles yet again, but the strain went straight to my knee.

 A much deserve rest awaited us at our water cache at the end of the Dodson. It was nothing short of a miracle I made it. My knee impeded my steps, constantly in pain. I had to carefully place every step, trying to keep as much weight off my injured leg as possible - a hard task when you're walking. I legitimately feared I would have to cut my journey short at the next cache spot. Luckily, Blake (right) brought lots of ibuprofen. I popped four of them and my knee was as good as new! For a few hours, at least.

A much deserve rest awaited us at our water cache at the end of the Dodson. It was nothing short of a miracle I made it. My knee impeded my steps, constantly in pain. I had to carefully place every step, trying to keep as much weight off my injured leg as possible - a hard task when you're walking. I legitimately feared I would have to cut my journey short at the next cache spot. Luckily, Blake (right) brought lots of ibuprofen. I popped four of them and my knee was as good as new! For a few hours, at least.

 In order to get a jump start on the next day, we decided to hike as far as possible before sunset. This was my favorite part of the trip. The trail was a dry creek that passed through one of the most beautiful canyons I have seen. The orange rock illuminated everything by brilliantly reflecting the setting sunlight. I wish it could have lasted hours, but it didn't.  Time was of the essence! The surrounding vegetation was very thick and not conducive to setting up camp, and we were running out of sunlight. The ibuprofen was also wearing off. It wasn't until after dark that we found a spot. It was barely large enough to fit both tents and slanted just enough that I would wake up at night having slid off my sleeping pad.

In order to get a jump start on the next day, we decided to hike as far as possible before sunset. This was my favorite part of the trip. The trail was a dry creek that passed through one of the most beautiful canyons I have seen. The orange rock illuminated everything by brilliantly reflecting the setting sunlight. I wish it could have lasted hours, but it didn't.

Time was of the essence! The surrounding vegetation was very thick and not conducive to setting up camp, and we were running out of sunlight. The ibuprofen was also wearing off. It wasn't until after dark that we found a spot. It was barely large enough to fit both tents and slanted just enough that I would wake up at night having slid off my sleeping pad.

 The situation was dire the gloomy dawn of the third day. The pain in my knee had been waking me up throughout the night and was no better in the morning. I feared a mountain lion would notice my injury and pick me off as I straggled behind. An ibuprofen breakfast was my only hope to brighten our future. It brought me to maybe 40%, but that would have to be good enough. This was the coldest day, with a high in the forties, but the clouds rolled back shortly after we packed up.

The situation was dire the gloomy dawn of the third day. The pain in my knee had been waking me up throughout the night and was no better in the morning. I feared a mountain lion would notice my injury and pick me off as I straggled behind. An ibuprofen breakfast was my only hope to brighten our future. It brought me to maybe 40%, but that would have to be good enough. This was the coldest day, with a high in the forties, but the clouds rolled back shortly after we packed up.

 With all the strength we had left, we hiked back up the mountain from the deep, dark valley. Once we were up there, we had to hike back down to finish. The flurry from the night before had covered the downhill trail with snow. It was the first snow I had seen in Texas in 6 years, and it was in a desert. Texas is crazy, man.  At this point, we were all ready to be finished and decided to skip another detour to the famous South Rim Trail that would have added an additional 5 miles. Next time.

With all the strength we had left, we hiked back up the mountain from the deep, dark valley. Once we were up there, we had to hike back down to finish. The flurry from the night before had covered the downhill trail with snow. It was the first snow I had seen in Texas in 6 years, and it was in a desert. Texas is crazy, man.

At this point, we were all ready to be finished and decided to skip another detour to the famous South Rim Trail that would have added an additional 5 miles. Next time.

 We made it! We were tired, bruised, scratched, bleeding. I was limping for the rest of the trip, but it was all worth it. This is the longest hike I have ever done, and we celebrated with beer. It was my first beer of the year, and I saved it for this very moment.  I truly believe you don't experience Texas fully until you've gone to Big Bend. We all came out on the other side of this trail with a much greater appreciation of what Texas has to offer in its backyard.

We made it! We were tired, bruised, scratched, bleeding. I was limping for the rest of the trip, but it was all worth it. This is the longest hike I have ever done, and we celebrated with beer. It was my first beer of the year, and I saved it for this very moment.

I truly believe you don't experience Texas fully until you've gone to Big Bend. We all came out on the other side of this trail with a much greater appreciation of what Texas has to offer in its backyard.

 After cooking a chili dinner, it was time to truly treat ourselves. We walked down a short trail that ran along The Rio Grande, the end of our country. Our destination was hidden behind the high grass. A hot spring is nestled on the bank of the river, separated from the river by a manmade wall, which I hear used to belong to a bath house back in the day. We soaked in the steaming bath, listening to nothing but the soothing river, until the only light you could see came from the stars. All our senses were immersed in Big Bend. It was the most perfect spot in Texas, and it was all ours.

After cooking a chili dinner, it was time to truly treat ourselves. We walked down a short trail that ran along The Rio Grande, the end of our country. Our destination was hidden behind the high grass. A hot spring is nestled on the bank of the river, separated from the river by a manmade wall, which I hear used to belong to a bath house back in the day. We soaked in the steaming bath, listening to nothing but the soothing river, until the only light you could see came from the stars. All our senses were immersed in Big Bend. It was the most perfect spot in Texas, and it was all ours.


Thanks for reading! If you made it this far, you might be interested in seeing more photos. I have uploaded more to my Flickr account, which includes pictures of more iconic Big Bend landmarks like Santa Elena Canyon, Balance Rock, and the beautiful night sky. You're also always welcome to follow me on Instagram or subscribe to my newsletter if you want to keep up with my goings on.

If you ever want tips on how to do outdoors or other adventure stuff, let me know! I love helping people get outside. 

Yosemite 2016

My training began months before we left. I hate running. It's the most boring physical activity there is, but run I did. I find this act of building up cardio endurance redemptive only because it allows me to hike for longer periods of time. In a few months, I would be backpacking a few nights in the cold mountains of Yosemite National Park, one of my favorite places in the world.

Day 1

My friends Alan and Stephen picked me up from the Fresno airport. Famished, we headed over to get a hardy breakfast at IHOP. Stephen took the meaning of "hearty" to the next level by ordering double chocolate pancakes and a hamburger with a side of fries. It was 10:30am. The next stop was REI, where we spent an hour because I think that's the minimum amount of time anybody can spend there.

We didn't get to the park around 4, which was very late because the sun set at 4:30pm. We went to the visitor center to decide tell the park rangers which route we wanted to do. Despite the rangers not recommending we do Cloud's Rest trail during the snowy season, we picked that one, but our original plans to start our hike that night were foiled since it was dark and also pouring rain. We would have to set up a base camp at one of the car camping sites that first night. This sounded awful because setting up a tent in the rain is one of the worst experiences a camper can endure, right after bear mauling.

The next thing we knew, we were opening the door to a cozy room at the Yosemite lodge. Somehow, we convinced ourselves to stay there that night. It was the family room, meant to sleep 7 people, but the same price as the smaller rooms. We organized our backpacks to be ready for the hike the next day and set our alarms to 5am and 6am, in case for some reason we didn't wake up to the first one.

Day 2

We woke up at 9am to a beautiful, clear day and went next door to the cafe to get yet another hearty breakfast. Afterwards, we put on our 50 pound backpacks, and the adventure began. In order to save us time, we took a trail that had a "trail closed - falling rocks" sign in front of it for some reason. No rocks fell on us, and the trail, which was made up of Mordor-like stairs, shave a mile off the trek.

 View from the top of Vernal Falls

View from the top of Vernal Falls

 View from the bottom of Nevada Falls

View from the bottom of Nevada Falls

Things were going well, but soon we discovered who our true enemy was. It was not the rocks nor the cold nor the mountain. It was the Barbell Brigade. If you've never hiked Yosemite before, it's like climbing stairs for several hours. With the 50 pound pack, that's a lot of effort for your thighs. For some reason, Alan and Stephen went to the Barbell Brigade, the famous Los Angeles Gym, two days earlier and did dead lifts. Both are considerably jacked, but one of them hadn't worked out in a while. His legs started cramping, so we had to slow it down a bit. Luckily, we got to the campsite in the mountains before sundown. In total, it took us over 6 hours to hike 4.5 miles. We ate, set up camp, and prepared for the hike to the top the next day. Before we slept, I set my alarm to 6am so we could start early.

Day 3

We woke up at 9am to another beautiful, clear day. After eating breakfast, going down to the river to filter water for the hike, and going the wrong way to the trailhead, we didn't really start the hike until 11am, leaving us less than 6 hours of sunlight. We hiked for a few hours. There was snow on the ground at this point, getting thicker as we hiked farther. The rangers warned that getting to the top might be impossible, and a guy we had passed who was going down the mountain the day before told us he attempted the same trail and couldn't do it. By this point, we only had a few hours left of sunlight and were probably several hours from the top.

We decided to call it. We hiked back down to the campsite, which took about half the time it did going up.

 Stopping for a photo shoot on the way down

Stopping for a photo shoot on the way down

We packed up our site and hiked in the dark back to the car. That segment of the hike, which took 6+ hours to hike up, took us 2.5 hours to hike down. Oh, what relief when we got to the car! We drove to our sweet Air BNB in Fresno and slept like babies.

Analysis

So originally, this trip was supposed to be 3 nights sleeping in the wilderness before heading to Los Angeles to spend a night in the city. As you have read, it was one night in the wilderness sandwiched between a few king-sized beds, so I wouldn't really call this trip a success. We definitely did not have the discipline to wake up when we should have, which was very detrimental to our schedule. Personally, Next time I'll a route that is more accessible for the season because even if we had gone farther to Cloud's Rest, I have no doubt the snow would have been coming up over our knees.

 The beginning of the trek. Ready for anything... except for early mornings

The beginning of the trek. Ready for anything... except for early mornings

At least I got to spend some quality time with bros I don't get to see often. After the night in Fresno, we went to LA. I haven't been there in 4 years! It brought back memories. I randomly ran into a friend I hadn't seen since high school, beat another one of my friends in ping pong, which was satisfying because he talks so much mess, and ate all you can eat Korean barbecue. Good day.

Now for the next hike! I had to keep my hiking training up even after Yosemite because I'm going to hike the Outer Mountain Loop trail of Big Bend National Park in a few days. My friend gave me a book called Death in Big Bend to prepare me. Encouraging.

 

Iceland, Through the Rain

Our first day was almost disastrous. In order to prevent an premature ending to our trip, three of us were dangling from the window on the outside of our motorhome. You see, moments earlier we drove slightly off the road in order to make room for an oncoming bus. We thought it was solid ground until we heard the sound of rocks scraping metal and saw the horizon out of the front window shift a few degrees. The back wheel had sunk halfway into the mud, giving our motorhome a very precarious tilt. I feared any gust of wind would push it over.

 I'm right outside the frame crying

I'm right outside the frame crying

Luckily, the window dangling idea gave the wheel on solid ground enough traction to get us out of the ditch, and we were on our way!


This is my attempt at a travel post about my September trip to Iceland. I have never in my life experience such an on and off rainy place. Though it was rainy most of the time, the overcast skies were overshadowed by the natural beauty of the land. There’s way too much to talk about so I’ll just hit a few points.

The Low Point: Viking Cafe

Google promised us a four star experience. Here’s a tip for people who might go to Iceland: they use Trip Advisor. Had we used that, it would have saved us a detour that took us to a cafe that only serves pastries and one panini that cause diarrhea-like symptoms in the people who ate it. Don’t go there.

Glacier Lagoon

We arrive at some of the bluest water I had ever seen, miniature icebergs scattered throughout and the heads of seals popping up every once in a while. There was a little part of the beach where the waves would go in and out every 30 seconds. Every time the waves went out, I could walk out to a rock that was just large enough that I could stand on it until the wave came back in and almost completely submerged it. It made it look like I was standing deep in the lagoon or riding a manta ray or pokemon.

 Before

Before

 After

After

That's my friend Tenders, but you can check out my turn here.

Nesbraud Bakery

We rolled up into the town of Stykkisholum, hungry and tired. Luckily, there was one bakery open called Nesbraud. The owner’s name was Eric, and he was the nicest guy you’ll ever meet. To top it off, his breakfast sandwiches were delicious. After I finished one, I bought another to take on the road. One of my biggest regrets in life is not getting a third one.

 Taken by my friend who went to Iceland a month after I did and visited Eric's bakery upon my recommendation. He said he remembered me!

Taken by my friend who went to Iceland a month after I did and visited Eric's bakery upon my recommendation. He said he remembered me!

Snaefellsjoekull National Park

This place had everything. We toured a cave, climbed up cool rock structures, walked a peaceful pebble beach. I’m a born adventure seeker, and this place was filled with it. We didn’t plan on staying for long, but once we got to that pebble beach, we stayed for a couple hours, doing nothing but watching the waves go in and out.

When it came time to leave, we drove out of the park and came across Rauðfeldsgjá Gorge, which immediately became my favorite part of the whole trip. A this stream cut through a mountain, creating a bunch of mini waterfalls throughout the gorge, some of which were too tall to step up onto. My rock climbing skills allowed me to scale the walls to get farther upstream. The last fall was maybe 12 feet tall. The only way up was to climb a rope somebody tied to a boulder at the top, but the rope was in the waterfall. I couldn’t risk getting soaked, so we turned back, but if I had waterproof clothes, I could have explored the gorge for hours.

 My fellow explorer Jon. The only other one brave enough to venture into the dark with me

My fellow explorer Jon. The only other one brave enough to venture into the dark with me

 View from the bottom of the gorge.

View from the bottom of the gorge.

The Lights

The second to last day on the road, the skies were perfectly clear. Whatever elf magic the Icelandic people use to forecast the northern lights said that they would be very active that night and to keep on the lookout around 11:00PM. The time rolled around but then so did the clouds. The forecast was right. The lights were very active, so active that they tinted the clouds green. Unfortunately, that was the only glimpse we got that night. I was disappointed and resigned myself to the fact that I just wouldn't see them this trip. It was safer that way.

The next night, our last night driving out in the country, my pessimism was proven wrong for the first time ever. The sky was as clear as can be. We found a beautiful lake surrounded by mountains. There were houses scattered throughout the area. There were no official campsites there, so we kind of just parked on the side of the road, which was definitely private property. The house closest to us didn’t have their lights on, so our trespassing went unnoticed.

Darkness fell, and late into the night I saw what looked like the faint beam of a spotlight that stretched across the sky. I thought that was weird because we weren’t near any cities. I took a long exposure picture of it, and it was green. We rushed out of the motorhome and looked to the sky. Shortly after, ribbons of green and purple majesty danced above us. All was well.

Our last actual night in Iceland was spent back in Reykjavik, the place we began. As night fell, I walked around the city alone, trying to soak up all I could before departing the next morning, and the country said goodbye, giving me one more glimpse of the best it had to offer.

Pictures and words cannot describe. Go to Iceland and see for yourself. 


For more pictures from my Iceland trip, check out my Flickr album or follow me on Instagram to keep up with my past and future adventures. 

The Case of the Missing Wood Printed, Tito's Handmade Vodka Branded Sunglasses

I have a very bad track record with sunglasses. I have owned tens of pairs since high school, which is when I decided my eyes were important enough to protect, and I have lost all of them except for the two that I currently own.

Actually, that's not true. I've lost one of the two pairs I currently own. This is the story of how I miraculously found the pair I lost.


I recently found myself sunglass-less. I had a beautiful pair of free, Samsung-branded, black matte sunglasses. I owned those for over a year, a world record for amount of time I've kept sunglasses by several months. The summer Texas sun was too much for me the following weeks, so I decided to buy a cheap pair from the first place I could think of: P. Terry's. I walked into that fast food burger place and ordered just the pair of sunglasses, no food, for I had dinner plans later that night and wanted to show up fashionable and hungry. I walked out of that burger stand, confident that my eyes were in good hands.

At the dinner, I shared the story of the weird look the lady at the counter gave me for only buying sunglasses and my grievances for always losing the ones I owned. My friend offered to give me another pair she got for free, and at our next meeting, she presented a pair of wood print, Tito's Handmade Vodka branded sunglasses. They were perfect. I love vodka. Eager to show them off, I wore them everywhere. I looked super fly. Then one fateful day, I lost them.

It was a bright day, nearly impossible to open your eyes without some shades. I had just purchased a used tent, which I had to set up in order to ensure it was a good investment. Having no backyard, I had to do this at a public park outside my apartment. I went to work, but the Texas heat turned every one of my pores like a water hose. Sweat kept dripping onto my sunglasses, rendering them useless. I took them off, placed them carefully on the ground, and kept working with my tent. Once satisfied, I quickly packed up the tent and rushed back to my apartment to replenish the liquid my body had lost.

The next couple of days, I couldn't find the Tito's glasses. I still had my P. Terry's glasses, so I didn't worry. I just assumed that they were lying around my apartment somewhere, but I kept forgetting to look for them. Finally, on the third day, I searched in vain. Then I remembered the last time I wore them. Panicked, I took my flashlight, for it was already late, and went out to the area where I last had them. I knew chances were slim. I was sure somebody would have taken them by now. I know I would have.

I got to the patch of grass under the tree where I set up my tent and scanned the area with my light. No luck. Disheartened, I shined my light in the branches just in case somebody put them up there. Nothing. I guided my light down the thin trunk, and I saw a strange sight. The tree was staring straight at me, wearing a pair of wood printed, Tito's Handmade Vodka branded sunglasses, looking super fly.

To whoever put them there, you are a better person than I. I will never know you or be able to repay you, but thank you.