The Grand Canyon

In August 2014, I started my tenure as AANR President. The following appeared in the next month’s Bulletin. Having just run my 10th Grand Canyon Raft Trip, I still marvel at the similarities.
 
ALL I REALLY NEED TO KNOW ABOUT RUNNING AANR I LEARNED BY RUNNING THE GRAND CANYON
 
  • No matter how scared you are, do it anyway. Anticipation is usually worse than reality.
  • Plan ahead – way ahead – and plan well. Good planning helps prevent poor performance.
  • Surround yourself with the best. Get a professional to do the jobs you don’t know how to do, then go along for the ride.
  • Enjoy the moments when you can relax, and savor the view, but be wary of the impending white water. 
  • Scout the rapids, get expert advice, and know where you are going before you go.
  • Develop camaraderie among your fellow travelers. Much more can be accomplished if everyone is paddling in the same direction.
  • When you need to rest, rest. The majority of your companions will carry the load for a short while.
  • No matter how cold the water, the sun is shining downstream of the rapid. When you’re naked, you’ll be dry and warm quickly.
  • After a long, hard day of fighting the currents that would drag you astray or climbing the rocks that stand between you and the objective of your hike, the happy hour will be even happier. 
  • Drink plenty of water, wear your sunscreen and your lifejacket, never dive in head first, and hold on tight – really, really tight. We’re about to have fun! 
 
I was inspired by Robert Fulghum’s book, All I Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten. I also ascribe to the following concepts (paraphrased from his book):
  • Imagination is stronger than knowledge.
  • Dreams are more powerful than facts.
  • Hope always triumphs over experience.
  • Laughter is the only cure for grief.
 
Did everything in the past four years go exactly as planned? Not at all, but I am grateful for the experience of having served the AANR members, and I am looking forward to having someone else take the helm. Perhaps we can still get back to imagining, dreaming, hoping, and laughing as we make AANR the best that it can be.

Taken from the AANR Monthly Bulletin, "Across the Board" brings information and thoughts from the Governing Board of AANR to you. The Board values your membership and wants to make sure that it is doing what is right for the members and clubs. The first step is good two-way communication.