Sunday, February 28, 2010

Earthquakes, solo ramblings in the Pisa, and a good friend realises a dream

It's a tad humbling to be posting benign photos as I look, right this moment, at the photos coming in from the unbelievably strong earthquake in Chile. Not for the squeamish!

My mundane story this week is that I set off yesterday with full bivy gear to push the boundaries of where I've been tramping before in the southern Pisa Range on my doorstep - to intersect the 4wd route explored with my cousin over the last few weekends, but this time on foot.

However at about 1200 m it turned cold and was very windy and unpleasant so I pondered my plan in the shelter of a low rock outcrop [self portrait - just love them: 10 secs. to get in position!]...

Making landscape photos is an excellent way to procrastinate, as especially as I realised I could do this one from the shelter I was snoozing in. I certainly spent sometime looking at the wrinkles and texture in the background and wondering what geological and weathering events caused them, and over what time-frame...

Once again in my outdoor's life, I realised the mountains were not at home to me for this trip - a night bivying even higher would have been miserable despite the full moon, so I made the descent to less windy climes and home - the return from whence I'd come [upwards sweating lots] an hour or two beforehand...

I reckon these cows know me, as I have a habit of doing this trip every year or so. I'm always a sucker for their kind and innocent eyes...


On another note I was recently pondering the very minor part I played in my friend Alexei realising his dream to coach at the Winter Olympics. Over two winters ago we [] decided to aim for the stars for a new coach for the kids we help with cross country skiing at The Snow Farm, and so we posted a Situations Vacant on the web site I'd created and host. I think Alexei may have found it by accident and a few months later I found myself with a flat mate for the winter, and what excellent company he was! That was two good winters ago and look where he's ended up as the NZ Coach => [which is a excellent blog on his day-to-day experiences at Whistler]

It's tempting to think it was all cause and effect, but it's not that simple. We attract what we think about, and the salutary point I make here is, if we're not careful, we attract what we don't want also!

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Blogger Ruahines said...

Kia ora Donald,
Those photos really drive home how powerful this quake was. My thoughts and prayers go out to the people there. I knew a few people from my uni days in the states from Chile, a nation torn up as well by political turmoil and terror aided by my own country. I think of them and their families.
Cheers for another virtual walk. This sitting at doing not much at all is getting old very quickly. Thank goodness for the winter games. Have a great week.

February 28, 2010 at 9:05 PM  
Blogger Bob McKerrow said...

Dear Donald

Your part in assisting in cross country skiing and saudry matters is very important, for we have to make NZ a country that can host a winter Olympics.

Great photos, great country to travel with you.


March 1, 2010 at 5:09 PM  
Blogger Donald said...

Yes, Bob good point. The Snow Farm did lots of work on this some years back, but maybe the time was not nigh. Last winter's Winter Games though maybe what was needed.

I got into these aspects of skiing due to needing to empower my son to get through his mum and my divorce, and I became so amazed at what begs to be done globally, that while seeing the Lees at the Snow Farm already had structures in place to help in exactly these scenarios, I joined in - it being more efficient than paddling my own canoe.

So... Ben Koons who has done so well to just compete at Whistler [actually leading his race for awhile!], was my son's coach. As a young man he inspires, so we push on to broaden things out, and if we could host such an event, well.... wow, we'd be really lifting the whole game of life in NZ, and this country really needs this right now.



March 2, 2010 at 10:49 AM  
Blogger Marg said...

Hi Donald
THose photos of the earthquake are such sober reminder of the fragility of life and how vulnerable our existence is. Not that i think life should be lived fearfully - rather appreciatively and being mindful of others realities - like those right now in chile.
AS to your last point one of my brothers has a saying " be careful what you wish for". I agree there is something true about that- of course as always - learned too late...


March 2, 2010 at 8:25 PM  

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