Reverb16 | December 11 | Favorite Things

Favorite things. Post a photo of your favorite things– it can be holiday related, or just something you are really fond of year round.

I know that people and places and experiences are always supposed to bring us more joy and happiness than our Stuff and Things, but sometimes a Thing brings you closer to those people and places and experiences, so you can’t help but love the Thing quite a bit, too.

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That is how I feel about her.

I don’t know if it is customary for people to name their canoes, but this one is called Antelope Wells, after the name of the outpost at the terminus of The Bike Trip That Should Have Been But Wasn’t. We took her out to a little urban lake near our home, christened her with some Glenlivet from a tiny travel bottle, and promised ourselves that the adventures weren’t over.  The heartbreak of the canceled bike trip was still sharp, and I can’t speak for Aaron, but it would at times wave over me unexpectedly and in ways so profound I was unprepared. Bringing her home helped channel that into learning something new and planning for a new expedition, albeit of smaller scale.

We spent all summer paddling around the local lakes. Aaron learned some useful canoe strokes, I learned that the large pocket of my life jacket held a 12 oz. can of beer perfectly, like a beer coozie you wear. I carried around a half-empty travel sized bottle of Glenlivet in the other pocket.

We planned a four night trip to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness for late September. A place relatively close to us that we visit all too rarely– our last trip being in 2011 when we were newly dating, inexperienced campers. In the intervening years, we have gotten a lot smarter about outdoor living, picked up some excellent gear, and gotten into a campsite rhythm (Aaron sets up the tent alone, Kate does most of the kitchen and water-fetching duties and I know it all sounds very Traditional Gender Roles and I don’t even care because I have a 0% success rate of keeping the tent pole out of my eye when setting it up).

And on that trip I drank whiskey while my husband fished.

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I sat cozy in the canoe, floating on glassy lakes, talking about everything and nothing; the only sound punctuating our conversation was the gentle whirring of the fishing reel and resident loon calling.

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I got be in this sunset. And just minutes after this shot, I got to hear the wolves howl.

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I got to follow moose tracks down a muddy portage trail, watch an eagle dine on a fine fish breakfast, swing in my hammock on the shore of a silent lake, paddle through a gentle rainstorm, build fires every evening, and talk (or not talk) to my husband late into the night until the sky was so spotted with stars you could hardly see the space between them.

Favorite people (well, person). Favorite place. Favorite experiences. All brought to me by this Favorite Thing.

 

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