Keith's Primitive Pursuit

Hello friends,

If you know me, than you may know that one of three passions which motivate me in life is my love of the woods, and the natural world. I have exercised long-term commitment and deep focus two the other two: music and writing. I have decided that it is time to deepen this third and oldest of my passions. When I was a child and was asked what I wanted to be when I grew up I would say either a forest ranger or a zookeeper. It turns out that I have never ceased to desire a life and vocation that has to do with wild places and wild things. 

In May, 2013, I will leave my supportive family in Lancaster and head to Ithaca, NY to participate in the Primitive Pursuits Wilderness Skills Instructor program. I will live primitively and learn primitive skills. More important than the skills themselves, however, is the program's emphasis on training participants to teach and to mentor in this context.  

I have chosen to receive this certification (legitimized by Cornell University's Cooperative Extension) specifically, for its particular thrust and it's aim to "leave no child inside." If I were to go and study with tracking and wilderness gurus, for the skills alone, that would be a fun but self-indulgent experience for me at this stage of life and I would never dream of asking my friends and family to support me financially in it. You see, I am not content to simply collect knowledge for my own sake, but have discovered a way forward through which I intend to enrich my community as well as myself. 

I am seeking your support for this endeavor. Simply registering for the program was a leap of faith, as my family and I are living rather modestly on even more modest income already. The costs I am looking to cover are the training, books related to the training, a few supplies, and my lost wages while I am away. In short - my time away will cost money, and I plan to turn this investment from you, my friends, into a meaningful certification with which to change my life and improve the lives of others. I have numerous avenues that I plan to pursue to make this a reality. If you would like to hear about them in greater specificity, please feel free to contact me. 

When I return to Lancaster in June with my certification, I will begin exploring opportunities to engage children and adults at various levels to teach and encourage awareness and a passion for all things wild and natural. This could take various forms, but one in particular that I hope to pursue is some means of getting underprivileged urban youth into the woods, to increase understanding, education, and appreciation for our interconnectedness with the natural world. I have numerous avenues that I plan to pursue to make this a reality. If you would like to hear about them in greater specificity, please feel free to contact me. 

I have devised various creative rewards that it will bring me great joy to create for each and every one of you that is willing to get involved. I am a "maker" at heart, and I am confident that the things I will make to express my gratitude are quite special.  

Thank you!

*Note regarding the rewards, which the format does not allow me space to include in their descriptions: If you already own Geillan A Prisoner's Tale, I can offer you an agreeable alternative award, or a copy of the forthcoming sequel when it is finished. Incidentally, I plan to use some of my time in NY as a writing retreat to make significant headway into that manuscript and hope to complete a draft by 2013's end. 

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Keith D. Wilson 
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