The Answer is Not a Hut in the Woods

updated 02 Aug 2023

The Answer is Not a Hut in the Woods by Exurb2a, the silly channel of Exurb1a, is a commentary escapism, the war of art, and the desire to make something of quality. It is a high quality listen for any makers, particularly the introverted ones, who have a fantasy of going off to a private secluded place to produce their work, their masterpiece. It is advisable that you listen now if you think you meet that descriptor, because it could save you 10 years of suffering since "10 years goes by as 10 years goes by".

The Answer is Not a Hut in the Woods

Part 1: "Seeking Happiness, Finding Unexpected Truths"

The protagonist, a self-involved and aspiring writer, experiences a period of sadness and restlessness after reading influential books. Inspired by the film "Into the Wild," they decide to escape society and find solace in nature. They travel to New Zealand and spend a year volunteering on organic farms. While most experiences are positive, one farm run by a bitter couple adds to their misery. Eventually, they find refuge in a yurt owned by a woman who becomes a close companion. However, the solitude and wilderness fail to provide the expected happiness or clarity. They begin to miss people and question their original motivations. Through their conversations with the landlady, they gain insight that finding oneself takes time and acceptance. The story ends with the protagonist realizing that their journey of self-discovery will require patience and understanding.

Part 2: "Lost Trails and Wilderness Reflections"

After a decade of struggling with writing and feeling lost, the protagonist embarks on a hiking adventure in New Zealand and later decides to attempt the Appalachian Trail in the United States. They hope to find clarity, inspiration, and ultimately regain their passion for writing. Carrying the weight of their backpack, they start the challenging trek and face physical and mental hardships along the way. Despite doubts and the realization of the difficult journey ahead, they find solace in the beauty of nature and the camaraderie of fellow hikers. The protagonist's hike becomes a symbolic quest for self-redemption and a way to reconnect with their creativity.

Part 3: "Rediscovering the Joy of Living"

Continuing their journey along the Appalachian Trail, the protagonist embraces the solitude and simplicity of their wilderness adventure. They relish the morning rituals, savoring coffee and appreciating the beauty of nature. As they walk, their mind wanders, reflecting on past memories, contemplating their purpose, and confronting their self-imposed pressures. In the midst of the forest, a newfound understanding dawns upon them: they had forgotten the joy of daydreaming and the importance of playfulness. They realize that their pursuit of writing had become burdensome, seeking validation and salvation that eluded them. However, the wilderness offers a chance to reconnect with their true passion and the freedom it brings. They reflect on the privilege of knowing their calling, despite the challenges it may present. With this realization, they find hope and acceptance, embracing the journey and the unpredictability of their future.

Part 4: "Trails of Adventure and Unexpected Kindness"

While hiking the Appalachian Trail, the protagonist encounters various fellow hikers and experiences moments of camaraderie, serendipity, and self-discovery. They meet eccentric and kind individuals, forming deep connections and shared experiences along the trail. The concept of deprivation becomes a source of entertainment, finding joy in simple pleasures and acts of kindness. They appreciate trail magic, where strangers provide unexpected treats and support. However, not everything goes smoothly, as they occasionally face challenges and moments of uncertainty. They get lost temporarily and encounter a restless night disturbed by wildlife. Despite these obstacles, the protagonist embraces the adventure, cherishing the sense of community and the awe-inspiring beauty of nature that surrounds them on their journey.

Part 5: "Lost and Found"

The protagonist faces a moment of panic when they unintentionally lose their way on the trail, unable to find their path back. After a period of wandering and uncertainty, they manage to rediscover the trail and appreciate its immense beauty. The experience prompts introspection and a realization of the stress and self-criticism they have imposed upon themselves. They find solace in the simplicity of hiking, focusing solely on reaching their destination and immersing themselves in the wonders of nature. They encounter kindness from fellow hikers, enjoy the occasional comforts of towns along the way, and come to embrace the culture of self-sufficiency. Eventually, they decide to end their hike, feeling a sense of responsibility towards their life outside the woods. They conclude their journey with a visit to the U.S Space and Rocket Center before returning home.

Final Part: "Rediscovering Home"

Upon returning home from the trail, the protagonist reflects on their hiking experience and the absence of the wilderness fantasy they had sought. They contemplate the purpose of their journey and the lack of epiphanies or stories that emerged from it. Through conversations with a friend, they realize that happiness is only real when shared and that seeking isolation as a means to find oneself may not be the answer. The protagonist acknowledges the importance of honesty and opening up to friends during challenging times, as their support can make a difference. They come to appreciate the adventures that occur within themselves, the process of self-discovery, and the constant evolution of their identity. The protagonist finds solace in the idea of constantly becoming a new version of themselves, embracing the beauty in life's challenges and the assistance offered by loved ones. They conclude that the journey is a collective experience and express a hopeful desire for friendship and growth as they continue to navigate life's mysteries.

Themes and Motifs

  1. Seeking solace and answers: The protagonist embarks on a hiking journey in search of a simpler life and answers to personal questions. The trail serves as a space for reflection and introspection.

  2. Perseverance and resilience: The protagonist faces physical challenges and moments of self-doubt on the trail. They learn to adapt, overcome obstacles, and develop mental resilience to continue moving forward.

  3. Community and camaraderie: The trail introduces the protagonist to a diverse group of fellow hikers. They find support, friendship, and shared experiences among these individuals, emphasizing the importance of community and connection.

  4. Appreciation for nature: The beauty and tranquility of the natural world play a significant role in the protagonist's journey. They develop a deep appreciation for the wilderness, its landscapes, and the sense of peace it offers.

  5. Embracing personal growth: The protagonist realizes that self-discovery and personal growth are not linear processes. They come to understand that life is a continuous journey of learning, evolving, and embracing new experiences.

  6. The value of shared experiences: The protagonist recognizes the significance of sharing their thoughts, struggles, and emotions with trusted friends. They learn that seeking support and being open about their challenges can lead to understanding and assistance from others.

  7. Finding beauty in the present: Instead of searching for ultimate answers or epiphanies, the protagonist learns to find beauty in the present moment and appreciate the ongoing process of self-evolution.

  8. The interconnectedness of life: The protagonist understands that they are not isolated beings but are connected to others and the world around them. They recognize the impact of friends, loved ones, and the support they receive during difficult times.

Overall, "The Answer is Not a Hut in the Woods" explores themes of self-discovery, resilience, community, and the transformative power of nature. It emphasizes the importance of embracing the journey, finding meaning in the present, and cherishing the connections we have with others.