And then you’ll see that it’s really men who are the irrational and hyper-emotional ones (p.s., anger is an emotion and males with an entitlement complex excel at expressing it, especially towards women and girls who don’t or refuse to succumb to his bullshit).
"Every woman who has ever been out camping alone knows that bears are nothing to fear compared to predatory men. Whether real or imagined, that fear is always there in the wilderness, riding on our backs like a heavy pack. I have known women, myself included, who ignore that fear or eliminate it by bringing a big dog with them; still, the fear is something to get past, an obstacle that is nonissue for most men. Women don’t enter the wilderness in the same way men do; we constantly return to our physical bodies and the ways in which they could be threatened, not by bears or bugs but by men. Our bodies become a filter between us at the landscape, preventing us from enjoying both."
A tent easily gives you a false sense of security. Those paper thins walls have the ability to make you feel like you’re shielded from whatever is out there, ready to harm you. That time I had Max sleep in the tent with me, and made Kyle and Megan pitch their tent right next to mine. “Paranoid.” No, a girl had been tied up at gun-point in that same area. Not paranoid. Realistic. There are darker things to fear in the woods than the wilderness.
"I had always felt a connection to nature, been bookish, and looked for a way to combine the two. The nature writers we read back when I was a girl and young woman were all men: Charles Darwin, Henry David Thoreau, Edward Abbey, and of course, the father of preservation himself, John Muir. Although I had, and still have, great respect for these writers, I could not relate to the way they viewed nature and their relationships to the natural landscape. While these male writers sought autonomy, I craved community. Where they were out to conquer oceans and deserts, woods and mountains, I wanted only to connect.
John Muir says when we go out into the woods, we are really going in. I wanted to see the Sierra Nevada in all the glory that Muir did, but when I got there, I still couldn’t adopt his vision, at least not wholly. Over time I realized I needed a uniquely feminine way of being in nature, of “going in,” one that included fears and failings (and even crying) but also intimacy and community.”
I purchased this book for that very reason. I was craving, practically aching for, female empowerment in the wild. I wanted a feminine voice, a voice I could relate to, MY voice. A book that gives me everything I need: a strong, confident female voice, who doesn’t pride herself on the amount of men she sleeps with along the way. A role-model, a figure, someone who tells me that I’m not insane for wanting the things that I want. I’ve read countless of wilderness novels, mostly written by men, or written by women who I have not felt connected to. 55 pages in and I am loving every minute of it. Let’s hope it stays that way.
*when I say prides herself on the amount of men she sleeps with, I don’t mean to be shaming the authors I’ve already read. I just legitimately don’t care about who the writers have fucked. Tell me about the wild, the hike, how it felt. Not the men.
“Girls are trained to say, ‘I wrote this, but it’s probably really stupid.’ Well, no, you wouldn’t write a novel if you thought it was really stupid. Men are much more comfortable going, ‘I wrote this book because I have a unique perspective that the world needs to hear.’ Girls are taught from the age of seven that if you get a compliment, you don’t go, ‘Thank you’, you go, ‘No, you’re insane.’”—Lena Dunham, in an interview with The Guardian (via florida-sounds)
Starting Out in the Afternoon: A Mid-Life Journey Into Wild Land
"I know women can do it. There are woodswomen all over the place. Probably these physical skills are matter-of-fact to a great many of them, but to me they’re completely alluring, the creme de la creme. Nothing I’ve done matches the pleasure, the pure exuberance of these small occasions when I can get it all going, when I’m out of doors, comfortable and dry, stuffing my senses. Despite a late start I expect to be a little old solo woman with outdoors acumen, poking around with tarps and knots and fussy camp stoves somewhere out of range."