My speech to my friends when I am some sixty-five or seventy years old.
“Sheep, dogs, friends, lend me your ears; I come to bury the past not to praise it. I once lived in a big and bustling city where there was hardly any land that was not covered in cement. I was expected to get a good job, have nice things, and then finish my days in a hospice while eating ice cream. I had to spend more than twelve years in school and only had a dismal future to face. But instead of succumbing to the daily grind of city life I broke away and freed myself from its entanglements. I came up here to you, my friends, some forty-five or fifty years ago. It was quite difficult to live up here among the trees, rivers, and mountains, but with hard work, courage, and God’s help I made it. I started slowly but surely, learning as I went along. I learned what wild foods were good to eat and how to build shelters. I grew crops, raised animals, and made what I needed. You, my friends, have been with me through many long winter nights and warm summer evenings through crisp autumn mornings and rainy spring days. We went through a lot together to live up here, and now I bury that past in my heart. It was not always a good past, first living in that city and then all the hardships up here, but I have tried to do my best. They expect me to retire those people back in that city, but I will never leave you, my friends, for my heart is with you.”