Most of my posts have been about a specific event during my time here, but I realized that doing this leaves out some of the best moments I’ve experienced yet; the moments that put joy into my day and remind me how great it is to be alive, regardless how small the moment may be. So, I thought I’d share a few things that have made me smile lately.
1. Running 6 miles with my crew, weird to be a highlight I know. This was the farthest I’ve run in my life thus far and I was excited that I was able to do it. It was hard, but so rewarding. Doing this helped me to realize just how much I’ve improved physically. PT is still quite hard each time we do it (for example: today we hiked ‘ski hill’ and my legs were on fire), but my crew is just getting stronger and stronger. I feel like my mental strength while working out has definitely improved this summer. I feel much more confident in my ability to push past the tough parts and get as much out of a work out as possible. I’ve been able to work harder than I really thought I could. While it’ll be tough without my crew for me to push as hard as I do here, it’s definitely a goal of mine to keep working out hard when I go home so that I stay in great hiking/running shape.
2. Out on patrol one day about a month ago, one of the Blue Angel jets flew super fast and low right over our rig, it was awesome! Apparently they fly over here as a part of their practice route from Whidbey Island, it’s quite a thrill.
3. Twice this summer my crew has helped out at Lake Wenatchee campground with the Smokey the Bear show that the Forest Service puts on for the families camping there. Smokey dances around and tells the kids how to put out their campfires so that the forest won’t catch on fire. My crew goes up on stage with our full gear on (greens, boots, yellows, packs, helmets, and tools), and our crew boss explains to the families what a fire crew does and what each of our jobs on the crew is. Afterwards we stand near the stage and people can come ask us questions if they’d like. After the second Smokey show that we helped out with I had two little girls come up to me and ask me questions. The first one asked me how we put a fire out, and then took a photo with me which was awesome. But even better was the second girl who came up to me; she asked me “what’s it like to be a girl fire fighter??” She was just darling, bright eyed, and genuinely curious. I told her that it was incredibly fun; that we got to go into the woods and hike around and see the beautiful forest. She was also wondering if I had to carry the same amount of weight as the boys did, and so I told her yes indeed, that we do the same work as the boys. It was just darling. As she was walking away she was like, “I want to be a fire fighter!!!” It definitely made me day.
Well, that’s it really for stand-out exciting moments. There are lots of little moments though that make me smile and laugh all day long. Only nine more days of work left, it’ll be strange to leave my wonderful crew and this place I’ve called home all summer long.