Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Heeding the Call of Duty

I got the call last night around 9pm.  It was my friend Deb.  She needed my help.  "Adam, there's a training camp going on again this week at Eagle Glacier and we need to make sure the snow conditions are good and the kids are training hard and everyone's OK, and we need to check the loop to make sure the skiing is still good up there." At first I didn't understand why we needed to go to all the trouble of getting our ski stuff together and firing up the helicopter and making the trip up to the glacier.  It seemed to me we could just call the coaches and get a report from them and save ourselves the hassle of going skiing. But Deb insisted, "No, we need to see for ourselves to know for sure."  I wondered why she needed me to come along, too, in the helicopter. But she said I was needed as a counterbalance. If I didn't sit on the left side of the chopper, it might be unbalanced and maybe it wouldn't fly right or something.

So I gradually realized that Deb was right.  What if the coaches didn't tell us whether everything was OK?  Or what if they didn't tell us the truth?  And what if the helicopter was off-balance because I wasn't sitting in the left-hand seat?  I couldn't have that on my conscience. Even though I had a lot of important things to do today like reading catalogs, eating snacks, and watering my dandelions I realized that I had a responsibility and an obligation to load my skis on the motorcycle and ride the 45 minutes to Girdwood to check on glacier skiing conditions.  We simply needed to know how conditions were on the glacier. We needed to bear witness.

Skiing is always better immediately after motorcycling.   Always.

The Thomas Training Center looked fine. No problems there.

The furniture in the training center has not changed a bit in the past 23 years, as far as I can tell.

All was good with coaches Erika and Sam.

Erika and Sam, giving workout instructions.

Here's Deb.

Here's me.

This week, it was the junior girls' turn at the glacier.

There's always going to be those two who don't get off the ground.

Erika, Deb, Mike and Sam

Our ride has arrived.
As it turned out, everything was OK at Eagle Glacier.  It's probably a good thing we checked.

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