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Quotes to Trip By

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"Adventure...is adversity rightly considered" by a pioneer Appalachian long hunter
 
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Walt Whitman:
“Now I see the secret of making the best person: it is to grow in the open air and to eat and sleep with the earth.”

I recite this during a graduation ceremony of a trek leader guide training program in the Adirondacks.
 
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"Hey, a rule is a rule, and let's face it, without rules there's chaos". --Cosmos Kramer

I really wanted to find the line by Sigrud F. Olson that was something like "No matter where you go, there you are". However I could not find it and the interweb was no help, they attributed that line to either Confucius or to some movie that I never heard of or watched.
All of Will Rogers quotes were good, as are most of Hank's, aka Henry David Thoreau.
 
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On really long, difficult ports, I'll sing this Rolling Stones song over and over in my head.....

I'll never be your beast of burden
My back is broad but it's a hurting
All I want for you to make love to me
I'll never be your beast of burden
I've walked for miles my feet are hurting
All I want for you to make love to me
 
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We always used to say...".hey man, if you're not where you're at, you're nowhere. " ....stoner logic,meaning live in the moment.

I will often say things to karin like...." Yaaaargghhh, lay us along side at pistol shot ..." at which point she looks at me all funny like. Other times I will blather at her in Cree or French,.... or lapse into Master Corporal which she has come to grasp a little anyways. Told the GF I was going to recce the campsite and give her a sitrep at the O group later. It took longer to explain than to say it thats for sure...lol.
 
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We always used to say...".hey man, if you're not where you're at, you're nowhere. " ....stoner logic,meaning live in the moment.

I will often say things to karin like...." Yaaaargghhh, lay us along side at pistol shot ..." at which point she looks at me all funny like. Other times I will blather at her in Cree or French,.... or lapse into Master Corporal which she has come to grasp a little anyways. Told the GF I was going to recce the campsite and give her a sitrep at the O group later. It took longer to explain than to say it thats for sure...lol.

I mess around with non-sequiturs, different languages, and sometimes just plain gobbledygook. But as I age I wonder if it's wise to play games using the symptoms of a stroke.
 
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One of my favorites, from Jerome K. Jerome’s 1889 “The Men in a Boat’. Committed to memory and oft-offered at paddler friend’s wedding ceremonies, with a glass in hand and some enunciation at the end. Never fails to drain some old friend glasses.

“Let your boat of life be light,
packed with only what you need
a homely home and simple pleasures,
one or two friends, worth the name,
someone to love and someone to love you,
a cat, a dog, and a pipe or two,
enough to eat and enough to wear,
and a little more than enough to drink;
for thirst is a dangerous thing”

Or, as everyday lifestyle instruction, this from Peter A Jay; local naturalist, journalist, paddler, philosopher, gentleman farmer and family man:

“Spend as much time as possible
on mountains, in small boats,
or otherwise outside in the weather;
if you never get wet, cold, exhausted or scared,
you won’t properly appreciate
being warm, dry rested and safe”

As a succinct, non-paddling life instructional quote I am most fond of Thomas Edison

“Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work”
 
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Here is one I think about when being wishy washy about going on a trip. It is attributed to Christopher Columbus:

"the difference between you and I is that I went."
 

Zac

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"For me, it takes only a few days of living--in the open--on the land, before I become enveloped by a sense of quiet exhilaration. It is as though the very power of the earth and the wind penetrate to my soul, and I truly never feel so free, so strong, and so alive, as when I am paddling down a wilderness river. If the wind can be unceasing, so can we. If the rapids provide challenges, we can meet them"

From Three Seasons in the Wind by Kathleen Pitt and Michael Pitt
 
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How about a canoe tripping poem.


The Song My Paddle Sings

West wind, blow from your prairie nest,
Blow from the mountains, blow from the west
The sail is idle, the sailor too ;
O! wind of the west, we wait for you.
Blow, blow!
I have wooed you so,
But never a favour you bestow.
You rock your cradle the hills between,
But scorn to notice my white lateen.
I stow the sail, unship the mast :
I wooed you long but my wooing's past ;
My paddle will lull you into rest.
O! drowsy wind of the drowsy west,
Sleep, sleep,
By your mountain steep,
Or down where the prairie grasses sweep!
Now fold in slumber your laggard wings,
For soft is the song my paddle sings.
August is laughing across the sky,
Laughing while paddle, canoe and I,
Drift, drift,
Where the hills uplift
On either side of the current swift.
The river rolls in its rocky bed ;
My paddle is plying its way ahead ;
Dip, dip,
While the water flip
In foam as over their breast we slip.
And oh, the river runs swifter now ;
The eddies circle about my bow.
Swirl, swirl!
How the ripples curl
In many a dangerous pool awhirl!
And forward far the rapids roar,
Fretting their margin for evermore.
Dash, dash,
With a mighty crash,
They seethe, and boil, and bound, and splash.
Be strong, O paddle! be brave, canoe!
The reckless waves you must plunge into.
Reel, reel.
On your trembling keel,
But never a fear my craft will feel.
We've raced the rapid, we're far ahead!
The river slips through its silent bed.
Sway, sway,
As the bubbles spray
And fall in tinkling tunes away.
And up on the hills against the sky,
A fir tree rocking its lullaby,
Swings, swings,
Its emerald wings,
Swelling the song that my paddle sings.
 
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"The only cure for Life and Death, is to enjoy the interval." G Santayana
I have been reciting Robert Service poems for 50 years around campfires. I enjoyed visiting Ester, Alaska and seeing the melodrama based on his life.
I have been going to the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering in Elko, Nevada for 32 years for the same reason.
I like to recite Grateful Dead lyrics late at night in coffee houses and bars on Commercial Street.

"I have seen where the wolf has slept by the silver stream,
I could tell by the mark he left, you were in his dream.
Oh child of countless trees,
Oh child of boundless seas,
What you are, is what you're meant to be,
Born to me, Cassidy. "
1st verse of Cassidy by John Barlow. Written in memory of Neal Cassidy. Grateful Dead around 1974.
 
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"Proceed as the way opens"
- from River Horse, by William Least Heat Moon

This quote has for many years been the shared mantra of the Missouri River 340 race, but it speaks more broadly to traveling on the land in the way we do.
 
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"It's not a map-- it's a to do list" "Adventure--- is adversity rightly considered"
 
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