• The New Normal

    Six. Weeks. Six Weeks. Six weeks gone, carving a living out of the sky itself, defying the ire of gravity by the hour, and cursing the sun’s lazy attitude. That fool has a bad habit of quitting before we’re finished. I guess it sounds rather interesting when you word it like that, but to me it’s just another day, and another dollar. Another cell tower climbed, rigged, and ready.

    Except for this day. This day is Friday. And not just any Friday, this Friday I get to go home. Ugh, I get to go home? now? Who’s idea was this? Right. Mine. fool. I’ve been up since 5am, we just put in a 12.5 hour day, and the schedule says I’m off tomorrow which means I unexpectedly have an extra day home if I jet out now… When opportunity knocks you don’t turn up your nose, so I load up the truck and depart Atlanta at 7pm.

    After driving through the night, I pass through Beaumont completely out of my mind with exhaustion, but right when I thought about quitting, and pulling over for a nap, the light of day rose again, and the sun came to greet me. I guess she’s not so lazy after all, and I’m the one who’s foolish. Hello Houston, I’m glad to be home. It’s now 8am.

    And that’s when it hits me. This isn’t normal at all, my life is completely absurd, and I love it!

    I was already thinking these thoughts when an article came out and summed it up perfectly “My best vacation is your worst nightmare.” For me that story is played out on a smaller scale every weekend. When we’re leaving the site everybody naturally starts thinking about the weekend, they’re done climbing, and I’ve only just begun! The rocks are calling, and I can’t deny them.

    Just a Tower-Hand Kickin’ it old-school in Cons

    “so how was your weekend?”
    “well, after work on Friday I went to Stone Summit (The US’s largest climbing gym) and did about 1,000ft of laps 5.10 or harder, then I got called in to work Saturday, but some guys from work want to go climb outside Sunday so I’m optimistic. I show up Saturday and wind up climbing 750ft of towers. Sunday I drag another tower-hand out climbing, since he has no gear I tie him a swiss-seat to follow me, and we paddle up some easy multi-pitch in tennis-shoes.”

    And suddenly it hits me… Not a single word in this description meant anything whatsoever to my bank-teller

    Austin Howell

    I am a semi-nomad that climbs all day long. Then I get off work and go find something else to climb. I have been living in extended stay hotels traveling around to climb cell towers for work, and sampling the local rock whenever we have a sunny day off since November 2012.

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