“Some trails are happy ones,
Others are blue.
It’s the way you ride the trail that counts,
Here’s a happy one for you.
Happy trails to you,
Until we meet again.
Happy trails to you,
Keep smiling until then.
Who cares about the clouds when we’re together?
Just sing a song, and bring the sunny weather.
Happy trails to you,
Until we meet again.”
writer: Dale Evans © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC
“Happy Trails To You” is one of my frequent earworms; and it reappeared this morning. The song accompanied the closing credits of the old television program “The Roy Rogers Show”. It was also used at the now defunct “Hastings Entertainment” store in my town each night, just prior to closing time. It was a gentle reminder for customers to bring selected merchandise to the check-out lanes and go home. Unfortunately, the entire chain was forced into bankruptcy liquidation back in 2016. I miss that store.
As the famous saying goes, “All good things must come to an end.” We feel melancholy and regret when something that brings us joy comes to an end. We learn to let go because nothing at all in the Universe is permanent. All situations and things are temporary, even ourselves. There is freedom when we realize this fact of life. We are free to live freely.
Judeo Christian scripture says there is a time to live and a time to die. It has been left up to us to determine how to know when these occur. How do we determine when we should let go of the obligations for which we have sacrificed our lives? At retirement? When we grow feeble? We hear that “Life is as short or as long as we want it to be, or so they say.”
We’ve heard that we are not our opinions, political pursuasions, religious affiliations, our nationalities, and so forth. If we allow ourselves to identify too closely with such concepts, we will feel insulted and offended whenever they are challenged. Also, we are not living freely when we lock ourselves within such boxes.
Have you ever felt caged in? Sometimes it feels as if one is suffocating. We feel desperate to leave an oppressive environment. Perhaps it was a job that trapped us because we absolutely had to have it so we wouldn’t become homeless. Maybe you felt confined in a dysfunctional relationship or family situation. Perhaps one is mired in financial debt. For some reason, we couldn’t immediately extricate ourselves from a toxic obligation. We learn to cope and get by just enough to keep our sanity intact. We ache for the day we can break away and live freely.
We had zero choices about which families, ethnic culture, and within which nation we are born. We are indoctrinated with dogma from belief systems we did not freely choose. We are expected to live our lives in the manner that others have designed. Some of those people lived millenia ago. Most people never question whether or not to remain within their native cultural containments. Life is lived by cultural default. Why make waves?
Did you ever have a dream that you were a butterfly? Several friends, acquaintances, and I have had such a dream. The dream is wordless as you flit from flower to flower. Aside from reproduction, the flitting around seems to be the butterfly’s main purpose. Although the butterfly has a short lifespan, it doesn’t worry about its impending demise, yet it instinctively avoids predators. The butterfly happily flits around despite the dangers that await it. It shares its pretty colors with everyone without thought nor intent to do so. The butterfly freely lives its butterfly life. After you awakened from the dream, did you briefly believe you were still that butterfly?
Obviously, humans are not insects. Our sciences have unlocked the secrets of DNA and our own genome. Our technology has taken people to the Moon and back home. We continue to aim for the Moon along with other places in the Solar System. We are able to communicate instantly with nearly anyone else on Earth via the Internet. We are capable of doing incredibly, miraculous things, yet we have not discovered how to achieve the basic aspects of good living. We have not found true peace. We have not stopped killing one another over ideological and territorial disagreements. We have not learned how to equitably distribute and share the Earth’s bounty. Very few of us have discovered how to live freely.
The Blue Jay of Happiness quotes science fiction/fantasy writer, T.T. Escurel:
“We are kindred spirits, you and I
One day you will realize you don’t have to fight your nature.
You can live your life freely.
I want to be there when that happens.”
Happy trails to you too! May they be enlightened by the sun and offer shade when you seek rest.
…and you, as well.
Happy Trails was one of the best theme songs. Roy Rogers was the clean and kind cowboy.
His show was one of mom’s all time favorites.
Glad to hear Happy Trails was kept alive in your community by a local store. What a lovely way to wish you on your way.
It always brings a smile.