9.15.13 Frost Andrew Busker
Yesterday when the cold wind raced through our campsite, I suspected that our nice, warm days were coming to an end. My suspicions were certainly confirmed when I woke up: winter is coming. This morning was the coldest morning we experienced thus far. With the temperature being 35 degrees at 7:30 in the morning, we began our day. After our morning meeting, we loaded the boats as usual. While I walked with my bags from my campsite to the canoes, a joyful yet morbid thought crossed my mind: all the mosquitos are dead. Even though that meant no more uncomfortable meetings with annoying buzzing around our ears or having to slap our arms and legs every minute, an entire generation of living beings vanished from our daily life out here. Yet, there is something to be said about resiliency. As we found out during our debrief this evening, not all the mosquitos dies in the frost from last night. Yes, a living mosquito is now few and far between, but those who survived have not given up just yet.
As we paddled northeast along the lakeshore, I noticed yellow autumn leaves peeking through the green needles of the northwoods. The trees agreed in that winter is coming and have thus started their preparations to ensure their resiliency. Unlike the mosquitos who will die and have a new generation to replace them, the trees will stand dormant until the spring air renews their limbs. The pines and spruces grow ever more resilient as they continue to thrive during the cold winter, refusing to rest like their brethren.
Out here, with the days growing colder and our time on the river shrinking faster, we must be resilient as well. We must not just stay warm, but we must not forget to enjoy the remaining moments we have out here in the Canadian northwoods. Like the now dead mosquitos, once our time on this river is over, we will not be coming back. Even though we are just mosquitos to this river, our experiences on this river make us like the pines and spruces: always absorbing, never resting. As we end our journey on the Grass River and continue to different lands, I hope that we grow into strong, tall pines and spruces, trees that absorb every experience and never rest long enough to go dormant.