A Change of Scenery

I’ve been struggling a little bit the past few months. I’ve talked about the challenges of an ailing parent; I know that is a large part of it. Having someone I am now 100% responsible for who neither understands nor approves of being under my care has been difficult. It has affected my sleep and weighed heavily on my mind.

As you might imagine, it has negatively impacted my writing as well.

So, this weekend, myself and several of my fellow Scout Leaders will be taking a group of our Scouting youth out to the mountains to build quinzees (see picture for sample).

We will be helping the Scouts build the quinzees and then they will have the opportunity to sleep in them overnight.

This may sound crazy or at least a little silly, but it is a great survival skill to learn and – just from personal experience – can be one of the best sleeps you will have. The snow is a natural insulator for sound and you will have a nice dark, cozy sleep if you are dressed properly and have the right sleeping bag.

It is also an opportunity for me to do something completely different and remove some of the stresses from my life, if only for a weekend. Little to no cell phone coverage means I can focus on the youth and the activity. Hopefully it will bring me home mentally refreshed (if physically tired).

This will be my sixth or seventh year doing this. Every year is a little bit different, but the time out in the mountains is always therapeutic.  Who knows? I may even come back with some new story ideas.



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