worthy news August 12, 2011
I can’t think of anything that makes me feel instantly more myself – good or bad – than catching up with my family. Here’s the best of the recent news:
Katie and Ian live in a very nice house on a less than fancy street. She was on her way home in a taxi, driving through one of the riotous neighborhoods near her place, when a megaphone blasted at the crowd “Disperse! Disperse now!” She saw a few shops on fire and burned out cars, and took refuge at a friend’s apartment. Her husband slept clutching a 4-iron. They are, for some reason I didn’t quite follow, on the way to Singapore today?
My parents are doing their annual avoid Houston until the sun relents thing, and are in Southern Ontario. Here they are kayaking without PFDs (!).
Maggie wrote another story for the Wine Spectator website, where she works as a picker of wines to serve at events-er and auction coverage person.
My nephew continues to enjoy a proper British upbringing.
grand jam August 10, 2011
Ask anyone who knows me at all, and they’ll tell you that I cannot stand that song “We’re Jammin.” My hatred for “We’re Jammin” is probably intensified because, like any normal person, I otherwise love Bob Marley. I even have this idea for total bouldering area harmony: A rule that the only music that can be played for public bouldering consumption be Bob Marley. Because that’s the only thing everyone will like. And anyone who doesn’t like it….I don’t know anyone like that. In fact I think I’m the closest person to that that I know, because I hate “We’re Jammin'”. Anytime I have to hear that song, I wanna say, “That’s great that you hope that, but I don’t like jammin too.” Turns out I have similar horrible feelings about hand jammin, and foot jammin. Fine with finger-jammin but it’s not worth the hand and foot jammin you have to do for a little finger jammin fun.
But I’ve been talking about wanting to learn to crack climb and place gear with confidence. Andy and I had this idea that the coolest version of me would be a me that bouldered and crack climbed. In pursuit of that, one of my hopes here this summer has been to redpoint a crack. But after 2 days seconding at the Smoke Bluffs, I just don’t like it. I’ve never experienced anything that is at once so physically painful, terrifying, utterly boring and pointless. Nate said he’d be stoked to do all the leads if I want to go up the Grand Wall, but the prospect of jammin all the way up the Chief is not enticing even if it is ultra mega classic mellow layback exposure gnar gnar. We’ll see. I’m gonna forget the pain and turmoil and do it, I bet.
In other news, I’m over that whole ‘never coming to Squamish again’ thing. That was said in haste. I’m pretty sure this is my favorite summer place ever, and I hope that as I figure out precisely how to organize my life, looong summers here factor in. Bouldering has been perfect – good weather and lots of projects, and for every one I manage to finish I add three more to the list. After almost 4 weeks, I’m seeing things go down much quicker and problems I wasn’t sure would come together are surprising me. I heard this funny thing that sometimes a send is like a suprise birthday party. You get to the top and it’s like, OMG, for me? Really? You GUYS!! I’m a little worried about my stamina, because I crash hard after about 4 hours. Maybe better eating, more relaxing, longer/shorter warm up? I’m not sure, but will report back after some tests.
I had my first real rough day in the boulders yesterday, when my projects were very greasy feeling (maybe after the weekend traffic) and the cruxes all suddenly seemed to require hard index-finger crimping. I cut my index finger on some moss a few days ago (yeah idk, the moss can be sharp?), and it’s taking a while to heal up. Here are some shots of the day:
After a little rage crying and sacrificing some blood on a boulder, I was dragged to the brew pub and stuffed with pizza.
So all in all this place is working for me. Life swoon.
glamping at horne lake August 1, 2011
Took a 3 day camping trip to Horne Lake on Vancouver Island for some limestone sports action. A delicious break from granite sloper training and brushing off holds all day. Climbed 3 days and no elbow fire! I think the relatively relaxed climbing was a good break, and I also think I’m trying harder than I think I am at bouldering around here. The rules at Horne Lake seem to be something like, ‘no chipping, sandbag everything’. But it was pure pleasure to move on that kind of rock again, workin knee bars, grabbin’ jugs, gettin’ pumped, taking looooong falls in a roof. I did some twelves (omg!) and took some pictures:
Back to the Squamish forest boulders today! I have a few projects in the talus, tons of classics to try and mellow circuiting to experience. Why is the sherpa taking so long with the coffee?