Some Other Dimension

To adventure. When I was young, guided by my imagination and the books I read, I adventured.

February Tracks

My siblings and I laid planks between tree limbs and called them forts. We pinned blankets over the dome jungle gym and called it a tent. We dropped charcoal briquettes into freshly dug holes to bake potatoes and became frontiersmen. We walked the railroad tracks, our sandwiches tied in bandanas hanging from sticks, and called ourselves hobos. We built toboggan slides and became Olympic athletes. I read Jack London’s Call of the Wild and imagined a life in the far north where snowshoes and dog sleds would take me where I needed to go. I traveled to my grandfather’s cabin in the hills west of Duluth, Minnesota, and decided I must live off the land. I read Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, and we built a raft that carried us nowhere on Kinnikinnick Creek. I read the tales of fur traders and voyageurs and learned to paddle a canoe….

To adventure. A simple infinitive suggesting infinite possibilities.

Photography by Tobias Mann,
Infinite Possibilities

Later in life, sensing that something meaningful was missing, the paleontologist Loren Eiseley wrote—

As adults we are preoccupied with living. As a consequence, we see little…I am not the first man to have lost his way only to find, if not a gate, a mysterious hole in a hedge that a child would know at once led to some other dimension at the world’s end.

Rabbit Den: Dimension into Another World

To adventure. As an adult, I adventure. I step outside my front door and pull out my bicycle, or fasten on my snowshoes, and head down the road or across the snow-covered field.

Photography by Tobias Mann,
Sand Hills Adventure

I go alone or with my children when they are visiting.

Tobias Mann,

We seek everything and nothing in particular. Shadows and sunlight; the interesting and the unexpected.

As when children, as adults we adventure. We step outside. We begin. We seek the mystery that leads, as Eiseley wrote, to some other dimension at the world’s end.

Photography by Tobias Mann,
Snowshoeing in the Sand Hills

Eiseley, Loren. “The Innocent Fox.” Collected Essays on Evolution, Nature, and the Cosmos, Vol. 1. Ed. William Cronon, 376. New York: Literary Classics of the United States, 2016.

Photography by Tobias Mann,


6 thoughts on “Some Other Dimension

  1. We did most of that stuff as kids too…but my parents also were great role models as adventurers. They traveled with us every summer, and then when we were grown they traveled the world. I have a strong sense of wanderlust and now that I’m retired I’m hoping I am able to explore like they did.


    1. I have also looked back with appreciation at my parents’ involvement in the “play” of our childhood. We built toboggan slides because Dad showed us it was possible…and, of course, my parents purchased the toboggan! My parents gave their Sunday afternoons to car drives to nature conservancies and historic landmarks where they parked and instructed us to investigate. Perhaps they were just ensuring some quiet time for themselves! At the end of the adventure, before heading home, my dad would ask if we understood where we’d played. “Do you know what happened here? Do you know the history of this place?” And then he’d tell us. My parents worked hard. A Sunday afternoon devoted to involvement with their six kids had to have been a sacrifice. I know myself how precious a day off is! Like yours, my parents were great role models. They are the reason I pushed my kids outdoors in the winter, why we involved them in travel and adventure throughout the seasons.

      I hope you travel the world in your retirement as your parents did — please document those travels for us to read!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s