The introduction of Roadkill, the armadillo character in the film Rango, is startling: a tire width indentation has cut through his middle, leaving tread tracks, and he struggles for breath. The animation here is more realism than not, and the effect is disturbing. Yet you can't look away, and your view from the best seat places you directly into his struggle as he says, "I must get to the other side."
The other side, he's heard, is where enlightenment is to be found. He knows this is a metaphor, even; "We all have our journeys to make." Over the course of the film, the lead character Rango, a chameleon, will find this to be true, and when the two characters meet again on the other side, some wisdom has indeed been gained, the smoke cleared.
The other side, however, is just that, and each creature must return to the side from whence he came. The armadillo, still a bit battered, must hope that traffic patterns align with his stars, and Rango must return to the site of all that led him to his new revelations, one fraught with large snakes and despairing souls brought so low they could be capable of anything.
Even when we've reached the other side, we need to go back.
There is no arriving, then. There is arriving, regrouping, and returning. And you will most likely be battered and bruised as early as the first leg of that journey.
In my bathroom right now there is one butterfly and four chrysalises. We have watched as tiny caterpillars became small ones, then large ones, then fat ones, and as they made their way upward to hang, upside down, for about a week's time. Inside the chrysalis, a caterpillar's parts turn to soup; and in one of nature's most miraculous events, that fat furry caterpillar becomes a fragile, flying thing of beauty.
In the hours after it emerges, the butterfly doesn't yet know what it can do.
And soon, we'll release it outside, where dangers abound.
But the caterpillar can now fly. The next stage of its journey has begun.
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