Rick's Journal

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Indian Summer, Adirondack Dreams

Well, I have to say first off that I never expected that life would be so busy that I wouldn't have time to update this journal since March! Wow! That pretty much tells me what kind of a busy spring/summer I have been having this year.

I will gather no moss this season.

(Unless it's sphagnum moss, which can be used for many different wilderness living needs! )

I just got back from the Adirondack Expedition, where we ventured into the Pharoah Lake Wilderness Area, and spent our days climbing peaks, swimming in crystal clear lakes, hiking through hemlock groves, listening to the calls of the loons and making great food. I was sick for about two of the days in the middle, but it was nothing serious, maybe just a sample of the flu that then morphed into a cold, so I was ok.

Being in this wilderness area was very intense for me, in several ways. One was the intense feeling of silence, of quiet and being surrounded by nature sounds, all day, all night. Especially at night, as the stars were reflected all crazy and wild, in the mirror of the lake, I just started to feel like I was losing the grip of human form. The owls call seemed to come from a deep place inside of me, and I could feel the wind in the treetops in the ends of my fingers.

The other way that the wilderness affected me was found in watching our group. Watching how each person changed each day, slowly, methodically, moment by moment, dropping away cares and worries and opening towards the beauty that surrounded them constantly. Of course, if you were not watching for it, you would probably not see it right away, because we had our share of jokes, bad jokes, constant chatter and playful banter that permeated our daily interactions at times. The change was there, and our last day of hiking out was one of power, sweat, beauty and closeness to each other and nature.

° * ° * ° * ° * ° * °

There is so much more to talk about, with the summer, my trips to San Diego, CA and Baltimore, MD as well as all of the camps and programs.... I just don't know where to start. I am glad to be heading into the fall season, and I know we must have done something right this year, becase we are all so tired! The Fall Instructor Training Program Semester is starting in a few weeks, and there are so many things to wrap up and get ready that I know there is no real rest in sight. But it is good work we are doing here, and I am glad we can do our part to bring nature and leadership opportunities to all these children.

Have a great fall!