Obligation to Family
The book “Into the Wild” by Jon Krakauer is a story about a man by the name of Chris McCandless. He is a man who grew up in a DC suburb, graduated college and decides to change the ways of his life. He journeys across the country, and finds his way to Alaska. His means are to leave the material lifestyle and become at one with nature. During Chris’s adventure he seems to neglect all communication with his family and over look the fact that they care about his health and future.
After Chris graduated high school he traveled the country and seldom kept in touch with his family. After being on the road for weeks Chris finally returned home, but within the next couple of days he would be embarking on his adventure to college in Atlanta, GA. Chris had eight step brothers and sisters and one whole sister by the name of Carine. Carnie and Chris had a close relationship. No matter were Chris went he always found a way to let his sister know that he was OK.
Chris graduated college in May and set out on his adventure to Alaska about a month later. Chris told the post office to hold his mail until August first so his family wouldn’t get worried. By the time they received the returned mail Chris was already half way to his destination. The last thing Chris’s parents received from him were his final grades and a letter thanking them for all that they have done. This is when Chris decided to change his name to Alexander Supertramp, by him doing so it would be extremely difficult for his family to get in touch with him.
While Chris traveled the country he stopped in different towns and tried to work for some extra traveling cash. He came across a town in South Dakota called Carthage. He worked for a man by the name of Wayne Westerburg. Chris went by his new name Alex and Westerburg comes to find out, Alex’s real name is Chris McCandless. Westerburg says, “He never explained why he changed his nameFrom the things he said, you could tell that something wasn’t right between him and his family” By Westerburg stating this it is safe to say that other people can see the difficult relationship Chris has with his family.
During Chris’s journey he never really opens up to anyone about his family. He doesn’t really show any affection towards them and if any it would be toward his sister Carnie. He writes in a letter to her stating that he is going to divorce his parents. The last time his parents saw him was after his graduation. Chris told his parents ” I think I’m going to disappear for a while” and that is the last they ever heard of him again.
Chris McCandless to me was a very intelligent but stubborn man. He didn’t care about how his family felt. All along his quest to the stampede trail Chris was kind to strangers and others but neglected the fact that his family back home worried about him. In the end Chris became at one with nature but realized that his surroundings (meaning family and friends) are what life is made of “Happiness only real when shared”. Thus within the story Chris shows very little Obligation to his family.