Monday, August 6, 2007

Back in Saddle--sort of

Fear is that little dark room where negatives are developed.
Michael Pritchard

Sorry to have been absent for so long.

My laptop charging pin snapped off the motherboard, so no laptop (new MacBookPro on order). And my cell phone fell off the kitchen island and it’s charging pin bent so I couldn’t recharge.

Hmm. Is the universe trying to tell me something?
Like, “you aren’t recharging” or “disconnect for a while”?

So I listened.
I returned to the Elbow River to the scene of “the incident”.
Sat quietly, overwhelmed by the sound of the water. It was the sound I remember most from hanging there in the river.

I cried a river.

Then I walked downstream put my hands in the rushing water, and my eyes to the sky and thanked the River Gods for releasing me.

And I paddled.
First a canoe. On flat water of beautiful Lake Minnewanka.
My sensitive, sweetie, Michael packed an elegant picnic complete with china, wine (in real glass stemware!), and a wildflower bouquet. Terrific.

Next, a canoe in the swift water of the Kootenay.
That was scarier. We arrived at our campsite riverside after midnight, so we slept in the back of the van with the back flipped open to hear the water and feel the stars.

I couldn’t sleep. I panicked and started walking down the highway--heading back home. I was irrational. Freaking out imagining all the ways I could die if the canoe overturned. Michael talked me off the ledge. I got back into the van and fell asleep.

In the morning, I was glad. It was a star day, perfect for paddling.
The azure blue river took us to the take out--safe and sound.

Next kayak was on Murtle Lake with some canoe support.
Perfect despite the rain.

And finally, I took myself down the Bow downstream of the Falls in Banff. Easy-peezey. I had done this 20 times on my own and felt totally at peace. This time, every fallen log looked menacing--and there was a lot of dead fall lurking off the banks.

What helped was focusing on the areas of the river I had never explored. The little tributaries and marshes that wended away from the river’s body. Some times in life it pays to get out of the main current, and take a look around.

So, I’m officially back on the horse. Well almost. Paddling the Ottawa with Janee and Susanne will make it official.

I am still looking forward to trying ocean surfing. And now I’ve even more reason to. There are no logs! All the surfing action a girl can dream of...but only the sand and surf to smack me upside the head. I’m heading to Cortes Island off the coast of Vancouver Island in September. Maybe Tofino is a place to park and play?!

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