Sunday, August 12, 2007

The First Leg

The first part of my trip went off without a hitch. I took the airport shuttle out to catch my flight. The driver, Robin, a vivacious Australian, chatted up a storm. Turns out we have some similar interests in alternative health. I now know where and when all the best Chi gong classes take place and have the name of the best doctor of Chinese medicine in town. I intend to check it all out when I get back.

The first leg of my journey I had a suit from Vancouver sitting beside me. And no, I did not dare ask what he was wearing. Turns out this city slicker had just been up for a mountain trek “boot camp.” I am so amazed that these city folk pay big bucks to have someone take them up mountain trails that I’ve done for free my whole life. And then have someone fix them healthy meals that we make for ourselves at a fraction of the cost. He went on about his trepidation at possibly seeing a bear or other wildlife and talked about the struggles of steep mountain peaks and low oxygen levels. They were taught about “detoxification,” and encouraged to drink these health tisanes in the morning which made him rather nervous. He chattered on happily until the loud whirl of the dash 8’s propellers droned out all other sounds.

If you’ve never flown in and out of the Kootenay’s, Nelson’s nearest airport is quite an experience. The mountains are nestled so tightly together that it’s been rated one of the worst airports in North America. As the plane takes off, it heads straight for the mountain in front of it as it’s gaining altitude, making a tight turn at the last minute and then another and then another before it is eventually high enough to fly off to it’s destination. The pilots in recent years seem much more adept at maneuvering these tight angles than in the past. Only the most experienced pilots come in and out of this airport.

(Okay, now it's your turn, and I admit that some of you will have an unfair advantage. Tell me where I took that first photo. Hint...it's not so far from home.)

23 comments:

The Fool said...

Hi Nomad. Ah, you're singing "On the Road Again." Good for you.

Yes, it is amazing the detatchment that cities create. I'll take the mountains any day. So nice to get for free what others must escape their existences for in order to experience. The Kootenay region sounds like a real healthy place to call home. Such a blessing.

And that airport take-off sounds like a bit of fun. Was the pic taken at the airport? Cranbrook?

Happy Trails!

dawn said...

I will be honest, I have not clue. I will guess the airport.

Anonymous said...

I guess considering it was a 'propellor plane' - then it is only a short distance.

Vancouver island - perhaps - a hippie commune?

Peter

Glad to see you - kept the discussion with your male passenger on a more appropriate conversation - this time...

Peter

Steffi said...

I agree with Dawn too.Enjoy your travel!!!

Paul said...

In my experience with Chinese medicine, I found the real thing - a third generation acupunturist from China - way superior to the three American acupuncturists I saw. The former had a real technique; the latter just seemed to stick the pins in according to a chart on the wall. There must be some US practitioners who learn the real thing, but you can tell when it's not once you've seen someone who knows what they're doing.

Debbie said...

I do-not-know. :) I'm interested in the answer, though!

Heather said...

Your picture was taken at the Castlegar airport. Hope you have a wonderful trip.

Mark said...

Sounds like the start of a great adventure.

Dan said...

Your landing sounded like someting I experienced years ago when I worked with the Navy. Our 727 had to land on a small island in the Aleutians where the short runway was surrounded by mountains. I swear the plane came within 50 yards of one of them. And it was snowing! :)

Cheryl said...

Umm..you were at the airport...so I'm going to have to guess Castlegar?

Anonymous said...

Must admit - you never said what type of clothes - you were taking??

So I am intrigued - as to the destination!!

Peter

thailandchani said...

You took that photo?

It always amazes me, too, when someone spends nearly limitless funds to have someone else do what they can do quite easily themselves.


Peace,

~Chani
http://thailandgal.blogspot.com

tkkerouac said...

Haven't a clue but it might be a short distance from the airport.

Annie Wicking and Loman Austen said...

Hi Clara,
Glad to hear you're having a great time.

Keep safe,

Annie

bohemiangirl said...

I found your site through Chani. I lived in Nelson from 2001-2002 and I may have left my heart there. I've been enjoying visiting your site for my Kootenay 'fix'. Thank you.

Carla said...

Hey Fool, I so agree about the mountains. You can take this girl out of the mountains, but you can't take the mountains out of the girl. It is a lovely, lovely place.

Cranbrook is close, but no cigar. We do have an airport a little closer than that one. But Cranbrook is where the planes sometimes land when they can't land at the airport closer to home.

Carla said...

Dawn, You are right about the airport. Now which one? Remember that this is the start of my flight.

Peter, Good guess, but to be honest, I can find hippie communes a lot closer to home than that. Although Vancouver Island would be a good second alternative if that was what I was wanting to experience. And…it wasn’t me who led that “other” conversation in a wayward way.

Carla said...

Steffi, Then you are partially right with your answer. It is an airport. Yes, I am thoroughly enjoying my trip.

Paul, What you say is so true. To be a truly masterful acupuncturist takes years of training and experience. It is very different from the western way of understanding health. I have also had the experience of excellent acupuncturists, and then some that were less so.

Carla said...

Debbie, I think you will find out very soon ;-).

Heather, You are absolutely right. I left for my trip from the Castlegar airport. Heather wins for this post. But there will be more guessing to come…

Carla said...

Mark, It most certainly was, it most certainly was.

Dan, Those sorts of landings and take offs can definitely be hair raising experiences…to say the least.

Carla said...

Cheryl, Certainly doesn't sound like you had to try too hard to get that one. Ha, ha!!!

Peter, 'tis true, I didn't. Summer clothing ;-)

Carla said...

Chani, I did take that photo. I have taken almost all of the photos on my blog.

Tracy, Good guess...that first photo was actually at the airport.

Carla said...

Annie, Safe is my middle name ;-)

Bohemian girl, Thanks for dropping by and visit anytime. I will drop by your site when I have a moment...a little difficult at present as I can't always get online. My heart is in Nelson too.