I just returned from Crater Lake, Oregon, where Thor and I went on a three-day cross-country skiing and snowshoeing trip with a group of 22 organized by Portland Parks and Recreation. It was sparkly, low-consumption, deeply satisfying, a good outing for the diamond-cut life I keep learning how to craft.
To clarify, we had sparkly snow and sun on Sunday, but a snowstorm on Saturday. The conditions were a little scary, actually. To back up, I had only been on skis four times in my life, mostly in high school (three decades ago, now). How was this going to work out?
I almost titled this post “Techno-Dork Goes Skiing In a Snowstorm.” My mechanical and equipment-handling skills are weak, while my athletic ability is strong. I learned later that someone had murmured in the parking lot, “She can’t even handle her ski-bindings; how is she going to keep up?” But I kept up fine, in what a skilled fellow-skier said was intermediate/advanced terrain and conditions.
I think a good life takes certain leaps of faith, whether you’re setting out on a trip with strangers (they soon became my friends) or skiing in a snowstorm (I kept a positive attitude, worked hard and imitated what the experienced people were doing).
The trip was a joy, and I highly recommend these trips to others. With one exception, it embodied my current understanding of the diamond-cut life: being outdoors in the elements, in community with others, locomoting with our bodies rather than engines. I’ll write about the exception later this week.