Happy 2-4!

Just one month to my birthday…I do like celebrating it twelve times instead of just once. Thanks for all your kind support of Elbrus: Climbing for my Dad. It means a lot to me and I know it will touch my dad’s heart. He wrote to tell me that he doesn’t cry often but he welled up pretty good when he learned of me climbing Elbrus in his honour. Please consider donating to the Canadian Prostate Cancer Network by clicking on this link: http://www.cpcn.org/honour_form.asp

Click the “In Honour” button and please fill out “Elbrus: Climbing for my Dad.” For the acknowledgment card, please use my address (I don’t want to beam out my parent’s address for all to see in cyberspace). I’ll forward all the acknowledgments to my dad.

I had a great day out off Salmonier Line at the Brother Brennan Outdoor Centre. I was assisting in a letterboxing lesson and then did an orienteering course sponsored by the St. John’s Orienteering Club. It’s great navigation practice to read the map and find controls using tiny changes in terrain and “catch features.” A catch feature is something that is almost impossible to miss and stops you from going to far (a road, a pond, a ridge, etc.). We also use “hand rails.” Terrain or human made features that you can follow along to get from point A to point B (trails, edges of vegetation, roads, etc.).

As I find myself struggling to find clarity about how to unfold the next 11 months that will take me back to Everest, I long for catch features and handrails. Each day provides new intuitive hits, some ration logic, new information, and other assorted data that mixes into my “snow globe” mind. As I hiked this afternoon, I wondered what spiritual/life handrails look like and how to recognize them…some days I think I know how to easily recognize them, others not so.

What I do know is that life is pretty full with teaching, training, raising awareness of prostate cancer, and climbing Elbrus until July. In the remaining interstitial spaces, I’m trying to do some home maintenance, look for a garage, garden, and get my weekly updates out on time. Hiking outside today showed me that my ankle was coming along slowly but that the injury has set me back quite a ways. I try not to panic when I realize my aerobic fitness isn’t where it’s been in the past. I keep telling myself that I have plenty of capacity despite the loss of six weeks of activity and that mental strength can make up for a lot. I thought of my dad often today-knowing he has had to adjust to being able to do less than he could in the past. His grace in accepting this continues to teach me.

Since curfew is in six minutes, I’ll close for now and catch you in a week.

TA

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