Alone – Not Wimpy Survivor

I just finished watching History Channel’s Alone, Season 2, or as I like to call it, “What Survivor Should Be.” I have long wanted a cold climate survivor, where the contestants are challenged by more than just having to be at the beach with 8 people they didn’t choose to vacay with. This is Survivor the type of Survivor that Stephanie would be able to do. (If you read my blog back when I wrote Diary of a Fatty, you’ll remember how much I LOVE Stephanie from Survivor and still think she’s basically the only Survivor worth the title…and I’m still aggravated that she didn’t get the title.)

There are no bikinis on this show, and the contestants don’t get to compete for rewards. They have to have knowledge of how to survive in not just the wild, but the wet, cold wild with winter approaching. There is no end date, just be the last person out there, for up to a year. They are living surrounded by some fierce predators and nasty weather patterns. It is not for the weak.

There are spoilers below, if you plan to watch the show, so you know, read with caution.

I watched this second season off and on, but thanks to Sling I can watching it in big binges and catch up. When my favorite went home, a woman who was about the toughest lady wrapped in candy and sunshine I’ve ever seen, she cooed and chatted with the bears and seals that lived all around her, I figured I had to pick someone else. There was a guy from Spain, who I did like, a VERY whiny man, who I didn’t like (though, admittedly I’d be whiny there, too) and this other older guy. I couldn’t tell.

After a while the older man was catching fish and said that he was amazed that the method he was finding most successful at catching food, was the method he’d never felt skilled at. He said something to the effect of “If God were to remove His favor from me, I’d be out of this.” Well, I’ve heard reality contestants say things like this before and it always catches my interest. It makes my heart pull for that person.

On the second to last day the man, David, stumble on rocks while trying to catch a fish that slipped off his line. He hurt his knees and returned to his makeshift tent to recover. He is talking back and forth about enduring and quitting. And in the end, he outlasts the rest.

They sent his daughter through the woods to meet him, her presence the announcement that he’d won, and he weeps. They hug, crying, and then after sharing a few moments at his camp, they fly out in a helicopter.

These were his final words as he left his cove….this is what I want to share here….

“I do have a love hate relationship with this place. You get up in the morning and you confront the realities of your situation. Some days it’s great and some days it’s horrible. But suffering has value. We avoid it at all costs. We would never want to go back and repeat it. But it has value. It’s a part of life and nobody gets through life without suffering. Nobody. Question is, what do you allow it to do in you? You can allow that suffering to make you bitter, angry, just a wretched person. You can allow that suffering to just eat away at your soul, turn in on itself and just chew you apart. Or you can look for the deeper meaning in it. My philosophy on suffering is that God’s trying to teach me something and I know that in the end I get to keep those lessons and the pain goes away.”

Man, amen brother. And congratulations.

On the win and on being up there with Survivor Stephanie in my book.

*The image is from The History Channel. Obviously I didn’t take it or make it. Don’t sure me.

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