September 2014 archive

Adventures, Cheap & Local: Canoe Trip on the Shenandoah River

Canoes Red and Blue on the Shenandoah River VA

Do you like the idea of watching otters and herons frolic while you glide through crystal clear waters with a canopy of trees shading you from the sun?

In other words, are you alive and breathing?

For some reason, I imagined a multi-day canoe trip would be much more arduous and complicated than it actually was. Not unlike the point where I realized hiking is nothing more than walking outdoors off the concrete sidewalk, canoeing is mostly just floating down river trails, carefully curated and maintained by the park service. Our 28 mile trek drifted sedately by over the course of three days.

And it is wonderful! And relaxing! And cheap! And you should absolutely plan a canoe trip before the cold weather hits this fall – just grab a map and a canoe (plus your  usual camping kit and supplies) from one of these fine local proprietors (Down River Canoe or  Shenandoah River Outfitters) and start on your way! Free camping sites are noted on the maps, as well as more difficult portions of the river and spots with clean fresh water available.

But for the moment, just take a look at these photos and visualize your own adventure.

Canoe Trees LowCanoe Sam Becca Low     Canoe Paddle Low Canoe Bernie Low Canoe Becca Zombie Low   Canoe Two Canoes Lowcanoe trip canoe paddle low  Canoe river grass low Canoe Christian Low Canoe River Grass Low (2)Canoe Becca Tall Lowcanoe in front lowCanoe Farm LowCanoe Horizontal Low

Evolution Inspiration: David Bowie – 5 Years Documentary on Showtime

Best of Bowie Cover

Whenever I feel stuck, stodgy or just completely uninspired, listening to the right David Bowie album never fails to help me see the situation from a new perspective.

There is always a David Bowie album for exactly the right moment (I usually start with Scary Monsters, a gift from a particularly creative, innovative and inspiring friend and go from there) and I happened to see the recent BBC Documentary on five pivotal years in Bowie’s early career this morning, right when I needed inspiration the most.

David Bowie has a gift for re-imagining – he sheds personas, visual, musical and emotional, with a fearlessness and commitment to beginning fresh again that inspires me.

This documentary particularly hit home as the filmmakers looked to the nuts and bolts creative process of starting something new, both with frequent collaborators and new partners. His fellow musicians and producers discussed their own journeys with his constant evolution and how they were able to gain or lose insight and perspective along the way.

Five Years was made mostly with previously unused or discarded footage by the BBC for the David Bowie IS exhibition staged by the Victoria & Albert. The exhibition opens at the Chicago Museum of Contemporary Art tomorrow through January 4th, 2015.

My only qualm would be a several minute section on China Girl, which included no mention of Iggy Pop as the writer/originator. Since the focus of the documentary was the influence of collaborators in both helping and hindering David Bowie’s evolution as an artist, I would think Iggy Pop would be a major feature!

Regardless, well worth your time – and please let me know if you were similarly inspired.