Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Day 31 September 15, 2009 Stewn on rocks called Albany (upper and lower)

Day 31 September 15, 2009
Our first chilly and dark day except with minutes of sunshine sort of reminds me of the Paul Petzoldt quote Jeff shared a while back now that we should hope for the best, expect the worst and now as days get close to finishing up planning for what is here among us. The river has been quite kind to us and an excerpt from the book couldn’t say it better especially as our group struggles to apply our experience and knowledge when running the rapids-our otherwise notable constant challenge. Hap Wilson shares (pg. 22)
“The Missinabi is a regal master, a dedicated tutor, patient and tolerant to our
weaknesses (that we should admit our limitations, as paddlers undeniably makes
us better canoeists) knowledge of self, of the equipment we use and our place on
the river administers a profound sense of security that only experience can give us.”

So as we continue to chalk it all up as an experience, the stuck-on rocks, the sideways pins, long paddles combined with weather factors sunshine, mist, head and tail winds. Also, crafting our river reading skills to see that downstream V, you know the best one from all angles down scouting up and when in the canoe as you are moving through. It’s always going to be okay especially when we arrive at camp-sometimes like today, we meet the unexpected and had a surprise campsite to accommodate us. 9 miles from where we started this morning and now camped along a strange stretch with the quietest water I can recall in several days. There are rocks strewn everywhere on this stretch called Albany (Lower and Upper) Rapids. When we warmed and dried up from an undertaking of misty weather as well as an abrupt swim for a few we got to some lessons by late afternoon. We tried an attempt at some interpretation lessons and Jeff coerced us into some group competition to come up with a list of things that makes for effective groups. Then collaborating for a special prize both teams worked to decipher a crazy detailed and elaborative list which when revealed was impossible to perfect. But with many traits, actions, and considerations we realize that it takes more than simple one-word ideas to make an effective group. It takes time and getting to know each other and I am glad that this group will have much more time together not only through to Mattice but onward for many more roads, mountains and waters to cross. Where we may actually begin to piece together all these things Jeff talks about and we try to understand. But I encourage us to remember that each day is another opportunity to receive gifts if we want.
-Christine Lagattolla

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