It is hard to believe that just a few days ago I was wading in the warm Pacific and today I walked Pearl in full winter gear in a snowy gale. Still, this is good unpacking weather. And yes, we had a wonderful time playing with the baby and 3 year-old Caroline, swimming, jogging, napping and reading--Richard Ford's Canada, Jennifer Lowe-Anker's Forget-me-not, and Marilynne Robinson's Housekeeping. I also read the latest James Lee Burke.
Oh great. Fireman Al and Lyle are on the radio giving the weekly Safety Report and it's all about the hazards of traveling Outside just as I am packing for a trip to Hawaii for spring break with my daughters and grandbabies. The list of hazards is endless-- from lost tickets to lost children-- and don't forget to leave the hand lotion behind and remember what your rental car looks like. Breathe. I can do this. And I will. Yesterday I sent my new book off to the publisher on time and in good enough shape, I hope, to be on the spring 2014 list, where it's supposed to be.
"There is no mistaking love. You feel it in your heart. It is the common fiber of life, the flame of that heats our soul, energizes our spirit and supplies passion to our lives. It is our connection to God and to each other." - Elizabeth Kubler-Ross
Our girls did not fare as well against Craig, but since the tourney is double elimination they are still in it, and play Metlakatla-- again-- at 11:30 today. The game will be broadcast on KHNS, where you can also find more tournament info.
Also, while I have your attention, here is the quote of the day from retired public health nurse and beloved elder Joan Snyder's letter to the editor in this week's Chilkat Valley News: "A doctor once suggested that birth control pills should be sold over the counter and cigarettes by prescription only. Good advice."
Oh my gosh- what a great game last night at the regional basketball tournament in Sitka. We listened on the radio. How fun was that to hear the Haines Lady Glacier Bears beat the Metlakatla Miss Chiefs in overtime? And Riley! I almost died for her when she was fouled attempting a three pointer when we were behind by three with about 20 seconds to go-- what terrible pressure! And then she sank all three! The volunteer announcers, Doug Olerud from Olerud's Market Center and my neighbor Lyle, a retired teacher and former basketball coach, could hardly contain themselves it was so thrilling.
With all that has happened this week in Haines, and the memories of last March suddenly fresh, thought you'd all like to read this recent article from the New York Times about Haines and heli-skiing, and parental love and risk, titled Extreme Grief.
Sometimes I wonder how so much good and bad can happen in such a short time. Friday night we watched the Telluride Mountain Film Festival. It was part of a fundraiser for the fair and the watershed council held at the fairgrounds. The first film drew applause because it was shot right here, in Haines. It was a group of extreme skiers dropping down impossibly steep mountains, more snow padded cliff than ski slope, it seemed. It was the beginning of the second weekend of the local heli-ski season and you could feel the excitement in the crowd of guides, locals, and visitors.
I am up too early. Sitting at the kitchen counter sipping coffee. The fire is popping in the stove, the radio is on low, with the news. Our news, that a heli-skiing accident yesterday killed one guide, and seriously injured two clients, hasn’t made the loop yet. But it will, I’m sure. I couldn’t sleep thinking about how our good news is someone else’s bad news. In the ski party of five (two guides, three clients) one guide was just on the other side of the crack that sent an avalanche crashing down the slope, and watched the whole thing.
" Happiness always comes as a by-product of something else- it does not exist as a separate entity. It is those who know what it is to give themselves to something larger than they are who know joy."- Bishop Edmond Lee Browning