Sunday, February 24, 2013

"Quid Pro Quo..."

What is our own 'Adventure Quid Pro Quo' we sometimes wonder...
What are we willing to give up to get. What is our equation of 'this for that', our own 'what for what', our exchanges of effort, of transactions reflecting value or worth.
This seems to be a key theme many times out there: the worth of these experiences for each of us adventurers; the meanings within it all...
Are the efforts worth it? Is all that training a price we are prepared to pay? Is the endurance & sweat and the endless preparation going to be exchanged for an object of value to us? All of that study, practice, need for coordinating ourselves & others - is all of that equity going to transition into something worth its' weight in...
The time especially might be a crucial measurement in our accounting, as is the possibility of injury, setbacks, and risk.
Are these worth it all?
Is the Quid Pro Quo of these fundamental elements going to match the meaning, the importance, the significance of the journey for us?
Absolutely my Friends.
For we most certainly always create an internal value, a dearness, a lasting utility, and a goodness - reflecting the virtues of our adventures and the essential meanings they hold out for us.
There will never be a more equitable Quid Pro Quo..... DSD
Dedicated to all those who are Adventuring For Another Reason this early wandering season.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

"When Learning To Linger..."

A long ways back, after often finding myself the last one up, I slowly began learning of the wonderful moments to be discovered in also being the last one off, or the last one down, even the last one to launch depending on the kind of adventure day.
Here was the experience, the natural lessons, when learning to linger out there...
Like within those special minutes when we put off the departure of our sea kayaks from finally leaving those secluded distant coastal islands.
Many of us also want to drag out those cherished moments upon an elusive summit, as so much has been given to get us up there.
The protracted time in a desert canyon becomes precious beyond words too, so we stay as long as we can amidst the eternities present there.
It all seems so natural. We can't wait to get out there, and are also then reluctant to come back. Kind of as I find myself moving even more slowly at the end of an adventure day, not only because of my age and an earned tiredness, but much more so as I don't want to leave that wild place just yet...
I want to grasp, and embrace more closely, all the lingering perceptions and emotions that have been gifted to us on our journeys.
For such determined, disciplined, and goal oriented adventurers that we all can be at times - there is such a positive tardiness we can also practice too. We are so wonderfully, naturally, paradoxical at times aren't we my Friends..... DSD
Thank you once more for sharing your timeless images my Friends.
Dedicated this adventure day to all those who are Adventuring For Another Reason this season.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

"Mixing In - A Forever Changing Process..."

When not out wandering this winter, and also for a special occasion this upcoming March, I have been continuing with this forever changing, always evolving process of 'Mixing In' as I paint these little Summit Stones.
For years now, and ever since the beginning, this unfolding process of ancient artistry keeps me focused, amazed, and so very intrigued as well. Within each adventure experience I find myself not only gathering up a few selected touchstones, but now as often especially chosen elements from far out there. Then into these small nalgene containers & bottles they rest.
This is not really a well known style of artistry, yet still a timeless tradition, that only some artists seem to blend in with their kind of painting. It has its' own unusual discipline, and with the over 200 colors of paints I am able to apply in this style of Naive Artistry , the results are simply wonderful.
Certain elements like small drops of glacier melt, or from ocean waves, often pure rain from storms, even tears of the deepest desert moisture, from snow & ice too, and the northern lakes, mountain streams & tarns I so enjoy - all mix in really well with these bright colors before painting.
Other elements like crystals of desert & coastal island sands, finely crumbled leaves & pine needles, tiny particles of ash & charcoal from campfires, or bits of shell too - need to be gently prepared, then slowly mixed in during different stages and with each layer of paint.
There is such a Mystery & Magic to this ever evolving process...
Later, when the right time and image presents itself on the face of these revealing Summit Stones, the very tiniest strand of a wild ones fur, like that from a Bear's rub tree, a Grey Wolf tuft I excitedly discovered, of from near a Beaver's dam - can be snipped so small, then deliberately and gently mixed in within the swirls of newly placed paint.
Later too, often when almost finished painting, and when the right time and symbolism presents itself, I have mixed in the very smallest section of a Loon's, a Raven's, or other bird's feather.
Then too, the powder from bark of a tree or driftwood, alpine flowers dried by endless winds, and the ancient dust from so many summits themselves are blended in.
In recent years I have sought out high ridgelines, and other such exposed areas, where at times the remnants of a lightning strike may be found. A little scrape of that rock provides yet another truly unique element for the paints' layers and thickness.
This little Summit Stone endeavour has always been about giving back & passing forward. Hopefully too it invites a few smiles from Finders of them, and Partners In Placing as well. Raising a little awareness along the way for all of the amazing Fellow Adventurers here, who Adventure For Another Reason is key to this journey. If my little renditions of Naive Artistry and 'Mixing In' within the images of the sky, mountains, forests, waters, campfires, flowers, beaches, and rocks of your discovered touchstone have invited these kinds of gratefulness - it's all good...
As another approach or technique is developed, a further element included, the more involved the process becomes. Which means I complete fewer Summit Stones each year. But as well, with each new element that is discovered, each new paint to be tried, this process changes yet again in ways I usually never expected. This affirms for me yet once more, how there is always more within than we ever first realize. An Outward Bound Metaphor that continues to echo out for us all...
Thus, hopefully, symbolically, all of the elements we each love are reflected upon and come alive among the slowly applied layers and swirls within every one of these little Summit Stones.
Then, like the stones in the image above, hopefully too they provide some moments where a Partner In Placing and an eventual Finder are gifted with a Hmmm Moment , like Jeff wrote so eloquently about.
A continually changing, always evolving process, much like the forever unfolding moments within our adventures as well, that I am so happy to share with all of you Dear Friends..... DSD

Sunday, February 10, 2013

"No Watch... No Worries..."

What an interesting construct we have invented in the concept of time, especially when it reflects moments from far out there...
For those who journey the wild places, we mark such passings in so many intriguing ways. Time to get there, when to return, available time to wander, time up, down, across, then over. Time to rest and get up. Time as safety, a personal best time, the pace of it all, even being present among the moments...
We watch the sun, the shadows, the traverse of the moon phases, the seasons, winds, freezings & meltings, our energy, then our aging too...
Sometimes things seem to speed up, other times many things slow down nicely as well, or do they, or do we...
On occasion, halfway through an adventure experience, when the battery of my watch is done with all its work, I have often been concerned. Then many times I simply let go of that sense of having to be on time.
Rather, as on a past Outward Bound course, when we turned all of our watches in, it becomes more about intentionally losing oneself within each and every moment, and becoming a part of the natural passage of things.
Then the moments are marked in very different ways. Like when our Outward Bound Leader said, "No watch, no worries". Now we get closer to the elements, and maybe even with the rest of our wild family out there, and we develop a more evolved natural sense of this thing we refer to as time.
Then, my Dear Friends, then, we have the time of our lives..... DSD

Sunday, February 03, 2013

"Of Meaningful Connections With Our Wild Animal Friends..."

Remember, the last time you heard an eagle's voice. Those who have also heard the longing calls of a loon out over a northern lake know how moving this is as well. We who have listened intently to the haunting music grey wolves create in our forests and mountains, have felt so much within those meaningful moments too. When sea kayaking out near grey whales, or nearby orca's, these momentous experiences become unforgettable memories.
Who has stumbled upon the tracks of a wild animal, like a mountain ram, or those of a grizzly bear out among the high peaks, and has not known the wonder, the tingling, the impelling attention such a discovery invites within us all...
When we ponder the distinct significance of these moments, as we muse over the importance and symbolism within these lasting connections, we then discover such amazing meanings ...
We are all seeking so many things out there. Something reflecting our personal purpose, our individual insights, our own unique motives, These are enduring perceptions that affirm what is most moving for each of us.
It truly can be those ephemeral connections with the wild ones, our wild animal friends, that present exactly that kind of wonderful possibility.
Then, when we share something of our intentions and commitments with them in turn, we begin to understand our most inner selves as well..... DSD

Friday, February 01, 2013

"Any Glimpse..."

"Any glimpse into the life of an animal quickens our own and makes it so much the larger and better in every way...". John Muir

Just pondering some quotes and gifted images from other adventurers, while I am 'Mixing In' some fine strands and bits of the wild ones fur discovered out wandering these many last seasons. They are often the last elements mixed in with my paints upon these little Summit Stones. I always hope they add to the character of each and feel they tell a story all of their own too. Muir's musing really says it all doesn't it my Friends..... DSD