Lessons from a River Trip

Bella Bjornstad - Ecuador


August 14, 2014

I spent a few weeks this summer making smoothies for the Bicycle Tour of Colorado, camping out every night, moving every morning, and making smoothies all day. But I was with three other people who are river rafting enthusiasts, so at every chance, and there were many in that state, we’d pump up the four inflatable kayaks and head down stream for a couple of hours. Our second river adventure was the most exciting: First thing on a cold morning, we put the boats on the Taylor River, just north of Gunnison, CO. The water was the classic green of snow melt, and cold, so cold. But a little cold water never hurt anyone, so we jumped in. Ten minutes on the water and I couldn’t feel my bare feet, and my hands were so cold I couldn’t peel them off the paddle. I was a little annoyed. But then I looked up. The cliffs dropped into the river, big firs dipped their roots into the cold water, and small grassy spots along the shore were covered with the biggest dandelions I have ever seen.

As I paddled along, trying to keep my gaze from wandering too far from the choppy water, I realized that life is like river rafting: no matter how hard you try, you will always get splashed, but if you pay attention and line yourself up right, you will probably come out on the other side and have a good time along the way.
So here I am, heading off I to the abyss of adulthood, ready to appreciate every moment, learn everything I can, and take nothing and no one for granted.
I hope that you will follow me along the way, on an adventure that promises to be thrilling!

Bella Bjornstad