I’m sitting in a converted Barn situated on the Crow Wing River west of Brainard. It’s an idyllic spot, the quite only occasionally interrupted by 50 caliber machine gun and howitzer fire. The other side of the river is Fort Ripley, a National Guard camp, and the boys are playing with their toys. I’m on one of those storied ‘boys weekend up north’ trips. It started as a fishing and golf trip, but has turned into mostly a drinking and golf trip. Since I neither drink or play golf, I’m kind of the fifth wheel. I’ve spent the last two days in the solitude that I get most days working at home. But it’s a pretty spot and I’ve been woodshedding on the guitar and doing some meditating.
Of course in these awful days of connectivity, I’m also ending up doing some work. As little as I can get away with, but work none the less. And of course it’s around a big emergency technical problem that is beyond my pay grade. It’s a good thing that I have a great support network, but it’s just kind of a pain having to stay connected to monitor the progress, sooth the client and try to apply my feeble reasoning to the issue.
And then of course there’s the issue of having that nagging voice in your head telling you to worry about the outcome. Taking full responsibility for the mess and not being able to give myself over to the moment. The meditation helps with that. In fact, I’ve been able to have extended periods of adolescent foolishness without the job even crossing my mind.
Tomorrow the boys aren’t golfing so we’ll have some extra time to spew stories and lies and think up ways to get into trouble. I believe that we are going to try to put our host’s portable dock into the water and then move it 50 yards upstream to a new position. So five guys in their sixties in the river with a large metal construction, four of whom will certainly be inebriated to some extent and the fifth with really bad knees and crappy balance.
What could go wrong.