I am a city-boy, born and bred. Early on, my parents moved to New York, and while growing up, all I knew were skyscrapers, traffic and noise. I always felt comforted to be surrounded by the masses and I knew anything I would ever want or need would be found close at hand.
When I grew up, the story was much the same. I remained in the Big Apple and got a job in investment banking. Throughout this time laughed at my “hick” friends who chose to move to the Deep South, or to some small Midwestern prairie-town…
One ordinary day at the office, I was working in my cubicle when the boss came down for a visit.
“You boys are doing a great job, and our profits have never been better,” he said. “But ultimately, the key to a well run corporation is the bond between employees. That’s why all of you are going on a ‘back to nature’ trip!”
The management and several departments all flew out to a secluded area in the forest. On the first day of the trip we had to practice falling backwards and into the arms of a co-worker as a trust-building exercise. Later, we put on war-paint and chanted: “Efficiency, Productivity, Profitability” over and over while dancing around a fire. We swung across rivers and ate bugs and listened to motivational pep talks.
I was completely sick of the experience and decided to walk around for a while to clear my head. When everyone was busy I snuck away from the group and went into the woods, despite warnings I had heard about the dreaded Sasquatch.
I wandered around randomly, feeling sorry for myself. I greatly missed my city and my old life with all its pollution, sirens and plumbing. There had to be a way to get out, but how…?
Suddenly I heard an unearthly roar shake the trees.
I looked up and came face to face with the Sasquatch! He looked just like Chewbacca and was covered with mud and twigs. I screamed and turned to run.
“Wait friend,” said the beast, “You have nothing to fear.”
Shocked, I turned and contemplated the hairy monster, which had its arms outstretched and a kind smile on its muzzle.
“You can talk!” I said, amazed. “How can this be?”
“Allow me to explain, good sir,” he said.
It turned out that the Sasquatch was actually a guy named Harold. He had worked for a large corporation, and like me, had been brought out to the woods for a back to nature trip. Somehow he had gotten separated from the group and became hopelessly lost. He had thus begun his new life in the woods, foraging and trying his best to survive. He had also somehow grown a thick fur covering, but I didn’t have the time to question him how.
“So Harold,” I asked, “How come you never left the forest?”
“I tried, but my car wouldn’t start.”
He showed me his battered Chevy. I took a look under the hood and found the problem.
“This is no big deal,” I said, “You just need a few adjustments.”
I helped him with the repairs and soon we were both zooming down the highway, I on my way back to the city, and Harold on the way back to resuming the human experience.