Me myself I

Posted by Ken Campbell June 23, 2008 0 Comment 542 views

A good traveling companion is hard to find. Everyone, it seems, has his or her little idiosyncrasy. We’re all a trifle odd and, given that it’s the little things about one another that set us off, we need to use caution when choosing a trail mate or a paddling partner. Small annoyances are magnified by close quarters and continual contact. None of us is perfect, or even close.

With that said, I have had the privilege of traveling with some of the best. There have been nights around the fire, when the wine was flowing and the sweet smell of burning driftwood mixed with the sound of a guitar. Those were good times, but the one sound that made those nights so unforgettable and timeless was the laughter of friends. There are mountains, Rainier and Hood, for example, that I might never have climbed were it not for the encouragement of my climbing partners. My best kayaking memories are of the times I have been fortunate enough to paddle with my wife, in places like Newfoundland, Johnstone Strait and the Santa Barbara Channel Islands.

Sometimes, however, the best partner is none at all. All the decisions are unanimous. There are no complaints about the cooking. When you do something stupid, and live, no one will laugh or think of you differently. Your day starts when you decide and ends when you want it to end. It is liberating and frightening, exciting and almost overpowering, this absolute power.

That’s why, sometimes, I go alone.

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