Tuesday, August 27, 2013
Yesterday I wrote about slamming into the lake bank. The photo to the right was taken about a third of the way into the return trip. I made contact with earth just below the trees at the center of the photo where the lake bank is almost a perfect vertical. I know the answer is no but I can't stop asking if I will ever grow up. : ) I wonder how fast I was traveling at the point of impact. Y.O.L.O.
An hour after slamming into the wall, still in a lot of pain, but knowing I will only have a couple more days to ski before winterizing the boat, my daughter took the picture to the left. I love to water ski. To be honest, I was really good at it when I was 16 years old. I had considered joining the pro circuit before my coach fell through the ice and drowned. I considered doing a lot of things when I was 16. I didn't do many of them. I will be 50 soon.
The water is warm for Riffe lake but here in the middle of August it has still only reached 68 degrees. In the winter the reservoir is drained to minimum levels to make room for the massive amount melting snow that will pour down the mountains in the spring and continue throughout the summer. Upstream the glacial waters are still an eerie shade of whitish green. Though the water is not warm by any means, it is warm enough to leave my wetsuit in the boat. My ski, ( a Jobe Spectra, custom fit to me ), feels like a favorite pair of shoes on my feet. It's an antique by today's standards but it's the only ski I will ever ski on. To me it's an old friend. Mandy is really getting good at driving the boat. She always finds the flat water. The sun is slowly setting. The wind has died. Sunlight dances on the water. The tow rope comes tight...... I use to ski with a half boot on my back foot. This allowed me to stand in the shallows with my ski out of the water and 20 feet of rope coiled in my hand. I would signal the boat to go and when the rope came tight I would just step onto the ski without ever getting wet. The idea of not having to get into this cold water is appealing but there is no substitute for the control a full boot on my back foot. .... HIT IT!!!! The V-6 engine and Volvo out-drive come to life. I have lost 15 pounds this summer and it shows. The acceleration shoots me out of the water. Mandy brings the boat to 32 miles per hour and holds it in a perfect straight line. She really is getting good at this. I don't feel 50. I feel no different then I did when I was a cocky 16 year old showing off and out-skiing everyone on the lake. I turn to my left round the first buoy and cut hard to my right accelerate across the wake set up and cut hard around buoy #2. Eight buoy's, eight perfect cuts. Thirty-two miles per hour on a 58 foot rope. After that I ski another 20 minutes freestyle before reluctantly letting go of the rope. I wish I could ski more but I am tired.
That is how we spent last weekend. It was so much fun. It could have been better had my persistent cough not been driving everyone nuts. I slept in the truck one night so everyone else could sleep. As it turns out, I have pneumonia and bronchitis and after a couple days on the antibiotics and two good nights sleep I feel fantastic. I can now celebrate my low P.S.A. numbers without the underlying fear that the lung metastasis is getting worse. With the exception of the Pneumonia, my chest X-ray looked great.
If you have been diagnosed with cancer and you are afraid, I get it. I am afraid sometimes too. You have to remember that a diagnosis of cancer is not a death sentence anymore. Even if the cancer is
" TERMINAL " (like mine is) there is so much life out there to be lived. Go out and choke the living shit out of every day. When it comes to cancer there is one thing to always remember.
THERE IS HOPE!!! Todd