“Where’re you goin’ Old Man?” That’s what the kid called me, ‘Old Man’, I didn’t like it but I let it go, he was just a dumb kid, maybe seventeen or eighteen years old. He came walking up behind me on the wooded trail, he and the girl. I assumed she was his girlfriend. She had long dark hair, and it hung down in her face. In her face I could see her youth and her innocence, she had a classic face. She had the kind of face that will still be pretty in thirty, maybe even fifty years. Elvis had a classic face, Sophia Loren has a classic face. The girl on the trail with the Kid had that kind of face. The Kid was one of those people that I call a putty face. He had a face that looked like everyone but looked like no one. I’d seen him a million times, but I had never seen him before. If you witnessed him rob a bank and the cops asked you to describe him it would be hard to do. He had no distinctive features. In a group of people you would not even notice him. That’s what I call a putty face, and Putty Face wanted to know where I was headed.

I pointed on up the trail and said, “I not sure where I’m going Kid, just taking a long hike. The morning sun is in my eyes so I must be going East, I’m just heading East right now. I like to see what I can see, yes I want to see what is just ahead, maybe something I‘ve never seen before. Maybe something no one has seen before, I’m just heading East.”

The kid’s girlfriend said, “What are you going to do when you get East, what’s in the East?” Her boyfriend looked at me as if he was wondering too, wondering what was East of there.

“You can’t get East, no matter how far you travel you will never get East. I’m just heading in an Easterly direction, that’s the way I should have said it, I’m heading in an Easterly direction.” I didn’t know weather the Kid and his girlfriend knew what I was talking about or not. “No, you can’t get East, I‘m just heading in an Easterly direction.” They looked at me like I was crazy.

As they slowed their pace on the trail the Kid said, “What do you mean you can’t get East, East is in that direction, where the Sun came up over those Pine trees. Everyone knows that the Sun comes up in the East. Why did you say that you can’t get East?”

“Well Kid, if we walk one more mile together and I ask you which way is East what would you do?” He and his girlfriend looked a little confused.

“I would point to the East and tell you it was that direction, East.” he said, as his girlfriend nodded her head in agreement.

“What if we walked one hundred miles, or one thousand miles? What if we walked one million miles and then I asked you which way is East, what would you say?”

The Kid and his Sweetie looked at me kind of funny. “If we walked a million miles Eastward and then you asked me which way is East I guess I would point to the East. Are you saying that we would eventually end up where we started and still not be any farther East than we were? I never really thought of it that way,“ said the Kid.

The Girl smiled, pulled her hair out of her face and said, “Oh. I know what you are saying, I think, it’s not the destination that matters, it’s the journey there. It’s not where you end up, it’s that you enjoy getting there. Is that what you are saying Mister?”

“Yes, that’s kind of what I’m saying, part of it at least, and it has been said many times, by many people.” I smiled and pointed on up the path. The Kid and the Girl took my hint and walked ahead of me, just a few yards at first and then they picked up the pace and were soon out of sight. But before they were far ahead of me I heard the Girl say to the Kid, “I’ll guess we’ll be older someday, won’t we?”

“I hope so,” said the Kid, “I hope so.”