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Abbe and I just returned from sky diving. It was awesome! Absoultely AMAZING!
Just one hiccup which I will explain in a moment. After about 8,000 feet of free fall, I got to float on the parachute for what seemed like twenty minutes although it probably was only about five. One of the best experiences in my life!
Abbe really enjoyed her Sky Dive, until her landing when she hooked her foot on the sod and broke her leg in five places. Lots of pain and an operation after ten days to insert a rod, a screw and a plate, then about six weeks on crutches. The doctors and nurses at Kennedey Hospital in Turnersville, NJ were fantastic – kind, expert and caring.

The serenity that you feel while floating, once the parachute has unfurled, is lovely.

 

With the news that Abbe had hurt her leg on landing, the enthusiasm for the idea quickly waned to be replaced with a complete determination to make things as comfortable and stress-free for her as possible. We needed to get her back to her Long Island home from the airport and the emergency room in south New Jersey and tend to the multitude of logistics that her leg-break has occasioned – pre-surgical clearances and surgery; time off from work; groceries; the dog and the cats; locate a walker (much easier to use than crutches) and bedside commode chair, etc.  Abbe’s daughter, Elora, has been doing exemplary nursing duty for her mother. The video and still photos of Abbe’s jump that came back from Free Fall Adventures were less than what we had hoped for, so that just compounded the disappointment.

 

 

Ripple  [Click on song title to hear Jerry sing it.]

If my words did glow with the gold of sunshine
And my tunes were played on the harp unstrung,
Would you hear my voice come thru the music?
Would you hold it near as it were your own?

It’s a hand-me-down, the thoughts are broken,
Perhaps they’re better left unsung.
I don’t know, don’t really care.
Let there be songs to fill the air.
Ripple in still water,
When there is no pebble tossed,
Nor wind to blow.
Reach out your hand, if your cup be empty;
If your cup is full, may it be again.
Let it be known, there is a fountain,
That was not made by the hands of men.
There is a road, no simple highway,
Between the dawn and the dark of night,
And if you go, no one may follow;
That path is for your steps alone.

Ripple in still water,
When there is no pebble tossed,
Nor wind to blow.

You who choose to lead must follow.

But if you fall, you fall alone,
If you should stand then who’s to guide you?
If I knew the way I would take you home.


La dee da da da, la da da da da, da da da, da da, da da da da da
La da da da, la da da, da da, la da da da, la da, da da.

 

Music by Jerry Garcia.

Lyrics by Robert Hunter.

After some wonderful and enjoyable trips over the past year to Maya sites in Guatemala (twice), New Orleans, Taos, and the National Parks of Zion, Bryce Canyon and Grand Canyon, the upcoming twelve months seem full of opportunities to expand my horizons.

Next month will see me flying to Denali National Park in Alaska, then cruising down the Inner Passage on the Princess Sapphire. I plan to bring my laptop and blog the entire trip as well as post the good pictures on my FLICKR site (see the link to the lower left). Tune in for my experiences.

At the end of this year, I will join Bill Grimes on his small boat, Dawn on the Amazon III, (see his blog link to the left) in Iquitos, Peru to tour the Pacaya-Samiria National Reserve between the Ucayali and Marañon rivers in northeastern Peru. I love the jungle. The Amazon has been calling to me all my life. Two of my favortite films of all time are Aguirre, the Wrath of God and Fitzcarraldo, by Werner Herzog. Both films star the certifiable and great actor, Klaus Kinski. Both were filmed in and near Iquitos as told in Herzog’s documentary My Best Friend. Before Kinski was signed as Fitzcarraldo, the part belonged to Jason Robards, who became ill in Iquitos during filming and could not continue. So the segments of the movie with Robard’s (as Fitzcarraldo) young assistant, Mick Jagger, are not included in the completed film. The house in Iquitos used in the film is now a Bed & Breakfast called Casa Fitzcarraldo. I will stay at Casa Fitzcarraldo in the blue bedroom which belonged to Mick Jagger. If we can arrange it, Bill and I will take a separate river cruise up the Amazon River to the compound of the Peruvian artist, Francisco Grippa. Bill is supposedly a great cook and I look forward to some fine meals aboard his four-cabin steamboat.

In the coming year, I plan to fly to Giza to tour the Egyptian pyramids, then fly on to Luxor for more pyramids. Then I will board a dahabiya (an ancient Egyptian sailing vessel) to cruise the Nile with a few like-minded companions in search of even more pyramids and adventure. After which, if I am lucky, I will fly home from Aswan.

Welcome to my new Blog. Hopefully, this will become a hitching post for your ideas and comments and contributions to some of the benchmarks my timeline is producing as I navigate this old cosmos. Fell free to browse, and talk among yourselves. Follow some of the links and find out where my connections have led me and continue to lead me. The About page has more.

An old Asante proverb says, in Twi: “WOFRO DUA PA A NA YEPIA WO” which means “one who climbs a tree worth climbing gets all the help deserved.”