Once upon a time there was a year--a year of just Archie and me--a year for us to do whatever we wanted to, a year to climb mountains, rock walls and ice. A year to eat pancakes for supper. A year to meet interesting people and to throw our doors open for whatever or whoever came along.
I worked and he went to school but other than that--we just did whatever seemed appealing. I think of it as The Year that I Learned How to Throw Back my Head and Laugh or The Year that I Stopped Grinding my Teeth or The Year of No Defensive Wounds. If I ever decide to write a novel, it will be based on that year--but it will not be until many more years have passed and I fully understand all that I learned from The Year.
Archie has always been an enthusiastic and charismatic person and during that year, many of his friends became interested in rock climbing and ice climbing and when they weren't out on the rocks or the ice, they were watching videos of climbers or practicing on the rock walls in our house.
In the early Spring, Archie got interested in slacklining, a sport that he had seen on climbing videos. He strung up a slackline in our barn with climbing rope tied tightly between the walls of the barn. A climbing rope makes a balance beam look like walking down a hall. The kids played loud music on the CD player and took turns walking the line and spotting each other. It was the hit of the mud season in Dixfield that year.
Eventually, school ended and Archie and I and some of the slackliners took our show on the road to Moab, looking for adventure.
I hadn't thought much about slacklining since then, but today, on Doors are Everywhere, Open Them, Beth posted a link to a totally inspiring slacklining video. I watched it three times before sending it to my two daughters and daughter-in-law.