Day 33 of our journey together and day 27 since beginning our backcountry trip on the river. It seems so long ago that we sat across from one another in Currens listening to each other tell about ourselves in three minutes. It seems like years ago when we stood perplexed at the impossible knot and all of Jeff’s other mind tricks in the classroom. Remember our first team building challenges together? The hula hoop pass, the wild woozy, and how we failed at the TP shuffle but were able to succeed with better communication later. We saw each other’s fears emerge on the high ropes and some of us broke down but we also learned that we are there for each other in times of need. Then came the summer; we worked and tried to make the most of the time left with our friends and family. We were separated by time and distance. I wondered if the spark we had ignited would still be burning come summers end and on day 33 of our expedition, this week I think it burns stronger than ever. It may be hard to see sometimes on our worn out bodies and our wind-swept faces, but we are stronger than we have ever been. We spent over two hours our first night hanging bear bags…now it gets done by one or two people while the others prepare dinner. We couldn’t even scat in the woods when we arrived…and even though we’re lucky for the boxes, I still see sticks and stones on the bottom of it. We knew little about maps and compasses let alone navigating a group and now we plan routes a week ahead. At Spring Lake we were quite the sight bumping into one another and now we ride rapids with relative ease.
What I’m trying to say is that we’ve come a long way. And with only a few more days on the river, we should take the bad with the good because we’ve had an amazing time together. We’re past the storming so let’s keep moving and be the first group to reach the transforming stage!