Gretel Ehrlich describes her move to Wyoming as awakening from a nap, satisfied in her new home she becomes absorbed in its tranquility and indifference. She is reborn, starts anew and creates a new life for herself. Ehrlich even cut her hair and buys new clothes to create a "new" and different person. To read and understand this essay means looking deeper into the author's story of rebirth, and how the big Wyoming skies were healing and put things into perspective for her. Thus, improving her quality of life without any fillers or distractions.
Ehrlich's purpose for being in Wyoming, is best described in the quote, "I suspect that my original motive for coming here was to "lose myself" in new and unpopulated territory. Instead of producing the numbness I thought I wanted, life on the sheep ranch woke me up...the arid country was a clean slate. Its absolute indifference steadied me."
This is the theme of the essay, the first step in the realization that Ehrlich didn't need "things" to be happy, she's found her calling in big sky country and is ultimately at peace with her inner self. The open space and sky of Wyoming according to Ehrlich, "Represents sanity, not a life purified, dull or "spaced out" but one that might accommodate intelligently any idea or situation." The Author is telling us here that space gives her more room to reflect; and it can heal people and give them a better perspective of their own lives as well.
Later in the essay we find another imperative couple of paragraphs explaining the importance of communication between people in Wyoming. Ehrlich says, "The silence is profound. Instead of talking, we seem to share one eye. Keenly observed, the world is transformed. The landscape is engorged with detail, every movement on it chillingly sharp. The air between people is charged. Days unfold, bathed in their own music. Nights become hallucinatory; dreams, prescient." Now it seems that Ehrlich finds that she has no use for unnecessary words when it comes to interacting with the people around her. She explains that there is no vocabulary for the subject of feelings, so, everything that is said is meaningful, even the mere presence of someone is highly significant. This tells the reader that empty inconsequential chitchat no...