Tuesday, September 1, 2009

A Typical Mystical Walk in the Woods With Jeff Lackney, "North of 60"

One of the things64 Jeff and I always did wherever we were, in (or out of) the country was to take a walk and have a look around. I came to relish those walks because they were times of sharing and, of course, laughing. We were about as different as two people could be from each other- me, South Philly crude and Jeff the epitome of Midwest nice. For some reason though, the combination worked just fine. Some years ago, Lackney and I were giving a workshop for educational facilities designers in Yellowknife, Canada in the Northwest Territories, "north of 60". We heard that there was a beautiful waterfall about an hour north of Yellowknife, so we were determined that our walk that day would be a hike in the Great North Woods to the majestic Cameron Falls. We arrived at the trailhead to the waterfall- me in business casual and Jeff in wingtips, a suit, and a nice gabardine overcoat! As soon as we were on the trail, a robin-sized gray bird landed in a tree about 12 inches from us. We thought that was "interesting" and assumed that the bird would have a look at these 2 hiking knuckleheads looking like we were going to meet clients instead of taking a moderately difficult almost 2 mile trek in the snow. As we set out on the trail, we must have really amused this bird, dressed as we were because he followed along with us closely the whole way to the waterfall, about 90 minutes away. We eventually made it to that magnificent place, then sat and admired Cameron Falls for almost an hour. Of course that bird stayed with us at the Falls, occasionally joining in our conversation (just kidding!). We then made ready to head back to the car and got back on the trail1670265-Cameron_Falls_Walking_Trail-Yellowknife with our guide, who accompanied us back to the trailhead, hopping from tree to tree, so close that we could touch him. As we were in the car on the road back to Yellowknife, our feathered friend flew directly and knowingly in front of our windshield. Just another typical time together with my good friend, Jeff Lackney. Damn!, I'm going to miss that guy.

-- John Sole

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