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The Adventures of Monty
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A warm welcome (Entry by Scott)
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(Feb 24th, 2005) Hi everyone! This is the first of what will be many journal entries. Thanks a whole lot to Chris Mielke for setting this journal thing up for us! The planning for our journey has been going on for well over a year now and finally we are getting close...just 65 days until we slip our canoe into the cool water of the Sauk River in Todd's backyard and begin our big adventure. A lot of exciting things have happened lately for us. This Saturday, the West Central Tribune will be running a story about the Expedition. The paper serves west central Minnesota and is based out of Wilmar. It serves the communities of Redwood Falls, Appleton, and Montevideo, each of which are on the Minnesota River. The reporter who interviewed us told us that many tropical birds migrate through the Minnesota River valley in the Spring, so it should sound like the tropics as we work our way up the river. So cool! On Sunday the Mankato Free Press will run an article about us. It's fun to be in the paper!
Yesterday I took delivery of our expedition flag. It's a beautiful blue color, with our logo in white. It was made by Peggy Lipinski, my friend Beth's Mother. She did a smashing job. We especially like that the flag is actually two flags sewn together--Todd and I will remove the two edge seams and each take a flag once the trip is over.
We have set the date and location for our launch party: Saturday, March 7th at beautiful Fort Snelling State Park. Details will be coming soon.
A week from this Saturday we will be going to the Minnesota Canoe Association's Far North Symposium. It's a fantastic day filled with presentations from people who have taken Arctic and Sub-Arctic canoe trips in Canada. We'll have a table there to show and tell people about our big trip and we'll have some expedition T-shirts and copies of 'Canoeing with the Cree' available as well.
Two weeks from this Saturday we'll be at Canoecopia in Madison, WI. Canoecopia is a huge paddlesports expo put on by Rutabaga, a paddlesports shop in Madison. The show is filled with people peddling paddler wares, cool places to paddle, non-profits and really excellent speakers. We'll have a table there, too.
Lew Orans, a mentor of mine from years ago when I served on the Pinetree Leadership Development Camp staff, recently and very generously donated a Canon digital camera to the expedition so we are having fun learning how to use it. I am going to attempt to include three pictures with this journal entry. One is of Todd speaking to a large group this past weekend at North Wind Winter Adventures, where we both work. The second is one of me with our faithful companion and mascot, Monty, at Caribou Coffee in St. Cloud when we had our interview with the West Central Tribune. The final shot is the Minnesota River at Fort Snelling State Park, right near our the spot where we will have our official launch on May 7th.
I will leave you with this quote I recently came across as it sums up how I feel about our trip:
And I thought over again
My small adventures
As with a shore-wind I drifted out
In my kayak
And thought I was in danger,
Those small ones
That I thought so big
For all the vital things
I had to get and to reach.
And yet, there is only
One great thing,
The only thing:
To live to see in huts and on journeys
The great day that dawns
And the light that fills the world.
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