Friday, December 08, 2006


I suppose in my own way I am a nature lover. I do enjoy the outdoors and gravitate toward items best described as organic or earthy. I prefer things as close to their natural state as possible. I grew up in a rural village, on a famous salmon fishing river, until now I have never really thought about how this has innately informed my natural likes.

But I do feel as though I must elaborate... or you might be left with the wrong impression.

1. Canoeing. Where I am from EVERYONE knows how to canoe. Everyone has a canoe. And every so often you find someone with a half ton truck to drag that canoe up the river (they actually drive it on the roadway) a ways and give you push so you don't get caught on the rocks. From here you just pretty much let the current take you and try to stay in the proper channel. A true outdoors man would consider this an assault on the art of canoeing.

2. Polar dipping. January 1, 2001 - have you ever drank a French 75? It is a combination of champagne, brandi and a splash of bitters. I dipped several times along with a couple of girlfriends. Apparently we had an audience. I woke up alone (in the buff) in the spare room of husband's boss' house. The boss chalked it up to a successful party. Husbands of dippees were unimpressed.

3. Tree surveying. I hated that day. I was lost in a 40 hectare clearcut among trees that had grown just above my head. It was impossible to see anything and necessary to shimmy your way through. Worst of all it was a spruce mixture so the needles were very sharp and kept poking me. Getting up on the stump was initially just to see where I was (the stump was about 6 feet tall). I couldn't bear the thought of spending the day in those horrid little trees, so I just stayed there and sang loudly to keep the bears aways.

4. Old Spruce Grove. This truly was amazing. I was unprepared for it. The west coast has a mystical quality - to be present in a forest like this has spiritual impact. I was there because of work, it had been a gruelling day. At one point we had followed a grizzly path as the bush around us was too thick. Had I not been forced into it (and dropped off by helicopter) that moment would never have happened.

5. I do love to laugh. Often at the most inopportune times.

So, now that you know the rest of the story...still think me a nature-lover?


This is Cathedral Grove on Vancouver Island located between the Island Hwy and Port Alberni. A very worthwhile visit if you are in the area (40 minutes north of Nanaimo).


Rob said...

It seems to me that, here and elsewhere, you present different (or even opposite) sides of yourself simultaneously.

There is often a frank, even blunt aspect to your blog.
This is refreshing on the whole -although it can be confronting at times!

Smarts said...

Hi Rob, as always a pleasure to have you here.

I think blogging has helped me in the 'sorting out' of these different sides. You are right - they live simulanteously. Yet I do not feel dis-genuine because of it, in my own way this forum has created a platform to emote and express who I am as a complete person. It helps me to see all the shades, even my unflattering ones.