The previous day was one of those that simply makes you feel alive: we had passed the 4,650-meter Akbaital Pass, gotten caught up in a snowstorm and then spent the night in the ruins of an ancient roadside caravanserai.

Living today and this autumn — with the challenge of being in the present despite life’s lingering questions of what is to come — I recall how I felt that day in the Pamir’s:

A feeling of absolute, serene comfort in being free, but also vulnerable, in meeting what is unknown and beyond ones control. An urgent desire to find out, but at the same time a freedom from the urge to control. A feeling that comes effortlessly while on the road, but that requires focus to attain in day-to-day life.

– Maybe the most valuable feeling to recall, on a busy autumn day?

Photo by Jean-Denis, a random cycling friend for two days.