Who is Sue and what is Suelandia?

Monday, October 11, 2010

Life is a daring adventure or nothing...

Hey people.  (Fair warning-- this post is long, lots of pics.)  So much has gone on! 

This is my new motto.  "Life is a daring adventure or nothing.  To keep our faces toward change and behave like free spirits in the presence of fate is strength indefeatable." -Helen Keller

Isn't this card awesome?  I'm going to frame it.  I got it at Seasons on St. Croix.  On that note-- First thing here I really want to thank everyone who came to my opening.  Seriously, it really meant a lot to me to have so many friends show up.  I have the coolest friends you guys!  Thank you!

Right after the opening I took some r&r.  I've been working like a madwoman for a little over 2 months, and really needed the break.  Sis flew up and we went on a little hiking trip to the north shore (lake superior).  This is mah seetah.  Isn't she cute???

Here's me.  "Prepare to be concurred, nature."

It was so relaxing, getting to spend two whole unstructured days with her just being goofy and enjoying being outside.  Many of you will recognize these steps at the Temperance River trail.  ~cool~

When we saw this sculpture Katie goes, "Oh look, there's that sculpture they made of the whole family that fell in the Temperance River."  (It's known for it's raging-- like, unbelievably pulverizing-- waters, and for people who fall in being killed.)  Sorry, our humor is kind of warped. 

It was so beautiful up there.  We felt so lucky.  I've never been up there when it's been so sunny and mild.  Everywhere we looked there was more gorgeousness.  It almost gave us beauty fatigue, but not quite.  We wandered in a constant state of awe, feeling incredibly lucky.

I was so happy Katie got to come up and do this.  She LOVES nature.  Like, with her whole little heart.  Where she lives not only are there very few opportunities to enjoy this (Texas-- flat, polluted, super hot & windy, fire ants, dangerous men wandering loose, no parks/trails to speak of, no wild lands reserved for recreation, or even worth reserving, etc etc), but she is pretty constantly ridiculed for even wanting to try to make a difference.  She even has to battle her conservative hubs to recycle, because down there it's considered "radical."

Look how happy she is.  This made my heart feel good.

And, much as I love her kiddos, it was wonderful to see her being able to just enjoy herself without being "on deck" constantly-- holding little hands, taking people to the bathroom, worrying they'd plummet off the edge of a cliff any second.  Instead, WE got to be all adventurous, and not worry about anyone but us.

We talked about how nerve-wracking it must have been for our mom to take us up here when we were little.  Luckily, she wasn't on this trip either, because we definitely did some adventuring she would not have been happy about.  Nothing radical, just stuff that might make your mom nervous.  It was the most fun either of us have had in a while.  ~special~

When I got back in town I still had a few more days off.  I spent one hanging out with my pal Linda looking at cool old stuff in Buffalo, one of our favorite activities, and then went mountain biking for practically an entire half day!  ~Awesome!~

THEN- This so blew my mind people-- On Saturday I met up with a couple of gals that were my best buds in high school.  We lost touch over the years, our lives pulling us various directions, but, thanks to facebook, found each other again.  They looked amazing (as you can see), and I was blown away by how all the things I loved about them all those years ago have actually intensified.  They are super cool women.  I'm completely psyched about resuming our friendships.
Aren't they smokin'?  We used to OWN it people.  Seriously.  Forces. to. be. reckoned. with.  My mind is still blown, two days later.  ~kablam~  ~head explodes~

 Yesterday me and Dan went for an urban adventure at Minnehaha park.  There is this cool trail below the falls, which are flowing really impressively right now.  By the falls it's pretty crowded, but still pleasant.  People doing naturey stuff in the city have a way of creating private space by averting eye contact etc.  You can tell who wants to be greeted and who wants to pretend they're alone in the wilderness.  It works out.  Look how cool it is down there!

If you keep walking and are willing to climb around a little over and through a few mud puddles, the crowd thins out considerably.  Even in the heart of the city there are beautiful things to notice.

We brought this machinist's handbook along to press leaves in.  Dan said it looked like the bible and like we were about to bust-out some evangelizin'.  Here's preacher Dan by this GIANT cottonwood we saw.  Huge bark!

We also discovered evidence of ancient civilizations in the limestone cliffs down where the creek flows into the Mississippi.

Okay, maybe not so ancient.  But it was still cool.

There was a cool giant cave too.  (Okay, not really that giant-- I've been in those illegal caves in St. Paul that go for miles.  THOSE were huge.  I'm told most don't exist anymore-- too deadly.  But this one was still cool and something different.)

After our hike we took a little ride.  We saw people riding on the other side of the creek when we were hiking, and wanted to check that out.  Turned out to not really be a bike trail, but that didn't stop us from riding this really steep scary thing we thought was a trail but was really some drainage thing all the way down the bluff and checking it out anyway.  ~adventurey!~

After that we rode down to riverside park to check out those trails, but-- closed!  That wasn't going to stop us.  So what if it said flooded.  So what if we had our road bikes instead of our mountain bikes.  We are adventurers dammit.

There were a bunch more caves to check out down there, and it was fun being in the closed park.  We ran into a few other poachers, like minded bikey people looking for thrills. 

Hi honey, I'm home!

Eventually we got to the floody part.  Undeterred, we shoved our bikes through the muddy woods at the side to skirt around the lake on the trail.  It was kind of hopeless because shortly after our "trail?  We don't need no stinkin' trail!" celebration we ran into about a dozen huge fallen trees, all surrounded by stinky mud and standing water, so we made our way back how we'd come, still happy we'd gone for it.   
Recently I had an opportunity to partake in some real crazy nutball type fun that would seem to be exactly up my ally, but I had that thing again where things in real life are never as fun as I anticipate them in my head.  The things that would have made it fun enough to satisfy me were unrealistic-- would never happen.  It reminded me of being young and constantly chasing a thrill big enough to satisfy me, always failing.  Yesterday was super fun though.  I think because it was unplanned, so I had no chance to form expectations. 

Also, it WAS kind of off the beam, and I was with Dan, who always makes me feel like one damned lucky woman.  I have the coolest life you guys.  I hope you all are using your time wisely-- goofing off and doing whatever you want as often as possible, because we only get so much time.

On that note-- my welder is waiting!


Lynn Fisher said...

Awesome time-off Sue! Glad you and Katie had some all girl time together...and some time away from welding. Now back to work...sound of whip craking...ksh ksh...

Linda G. said...

Now, that's what I call some great time off! So, can we trade lives? Just for a little while? I'll go hiking and make beautiful sculptures, and you can be a smartass and drink two-cherry Manhattans. ;)

strugglingwriter said...

Sounds like an awesome time. I'm just a tad jealous I can't go on an adventure like that :)

Good to have you back, though.


pseudosu said...

Thanks. I needed that to get me back to making tiny trees-- my favorite!

No way- esp since my Manhattans would have to be alcohol free. No fun at ALL.

Thanks! It had been so long I was sort of wondering if it was worth coming back, but thank you. :)

Maery Rose said...

I never get sick of the sights on the North Shore. Glad you and your sis were able to get out together. Looks like a fun adventure with Dan too. I would have totally done the mud but not sure about the steep hill. I like those kind of adventures on my trusty horse. He has better balance than I do.

irishk said...

It's so nice to have you back. It appears that you have had a great couple weeks. Helen Keller's quote is a fine motto and suits you well. I hope you are reenergized to prepare for you next show. A woman in demand ~ that is a glorious thing to be, when it is what your heart yearns to be doing. I am glad you are cognizant of your many blessings, that makes it even sweeter:-)

Jill said...

Looks like fun! Love the picture of (guessing) your sister lying down at the waterfall. The water looks as if it is flowing out of her head, around the rock and down the falls. Like ideas flowing from her brain. Nice shot. Sorry if that is a bit too deep...ha. Beautiful place!