Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Whitewater: Why outside?

Why outside?

I went rafting this weekend on the Upper Gauley River in West Virginia - world-class, 5+ whitewater. On the long drive back home, as our moods began to change from euphoric to contemplative, conversation slowed and then stopped. Then, after a few minutes, one of my friends broke the silence.

"I was just thinking," he said. "Out there on the river, everything is so simple. You're getting ready to head into a big Class 5 rapid, you get yourself braced into position, and you're listening for commands from the guide, ready to react. Everything is focused on that. No distractions, no deadlines, no responsibilities, just you out there on the river. You and the water. There's nothing else like it."

That's why outside.

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