Letter I

I stand before my highest mountain and before my longest journey. Therefore, must I descend, deeper than I have ever descended.

Life is indeed about reaching the very bottom. Might I add that for such a journey, the vitality that you possess and the circumstances that you find yourself in give you a great advantage.

A lowered gaze helps you spot sharp rocks along the way, it keeps the wind out of your eyes. A hunched back keeps you steady so you do not stumble. Your hardened skin weathers the scalding heat of the days and the biting cold of the nights. Your hearing, long accustomed to the cries of the marginal, has superior range. Your features, bland and insipid, guard you against warring tribes that might cross your path. And your empty pockets shield you from thieves and bandits.

You have quite the advantage.