– Everyone has a story. –

People have accused me, at times, of being overly grandiose.  Where most people see “a few strokes of luck” or “a bad day,” I am sometimes inclined to interpret it as part of an overarching narrative with complex characters, unexpected events, and scenery that can’t be replicated with CGI.

My sister thinks it’s weird that I see people as protagonists (and occasionally as antagonists) in a messy web of overlapping storylines.  I once believed that everyone saw themselves as the main character of their own personal tv show—maybe even several tv shows.  But maybe that’s just me.

Regardless of how abnormal my worldview is, I haven’t been proven wrong yet.

In the four years I spent at the University of Alabama, I visited decrepit mansions, ran from feral hogs, and had dealings with secret societies.  There were plenty of dull moments, but there were also enough exciting ones to keep me convinced of life’s adventure.

And if any place is ripe for adventures, it’s Wyoming. Since arriving here a little over a month ago, I’ve met a whole cast of characters ranging from moonshiners to cowboy poets.  I’ve seen landscapes that seem to be plucked from a Peter Jackson movie and quaint small towns that would make Stephen King proud.  And Wyoming has certainly held true on its promise to be unpredictable.  I learned that on my first day, when my tour along a “Scenic Backroad” culminated in helping to corral an escaped sheep.

I’ve been blessed with the ability to experience quite a few stories throughout my life.  But for every story I can tell, I’ve encountered dozens more told by others.  In fact, despite seeing myself as the main character of my own story, most of my favorite tales are ones that were experienced by other people.

I’m fortunate to be in a position where it’s my job to listen to people’s stories, and I encourage you to tell me yours sometime.  But, beyond anything else, I want you to know that you have one.

By: T.J. Parks for 82801

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