"Before anything else, preparation is the key to success." If Alexander Graham Bell's words hold true, come next spring, my sweet husband and wonderful son-in-law are going to be celebrating their shared success. And right now, at our home in Pullman and at our daughter and son-in law's house in Kansas, preparations abound.
Books are being read, maps are being studied and fly rods are being flexed in Wichita. At our house, recipes are being tested, flies are being tied and a wide variety of foods are making their way to our dehydrator. Every single preparation being made here and there is with the goal of "the" trip being all it can possibly be.
"The" trip being planned, prepared for and talked about at every opportunity is a grand ten-day adventure to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area (BWCA) in northern Minnesota and Canada's Quetico Park.
This spectacularly beautiful area is an outdoor enthusiast's dream. The crystal clear waters, the abundant wildlife and the experience of true silence - these will be the rewards of ongoing preparation - lots of preparation.
Why so much preparation? For starters, you won't find any shops, stores or homes in this breathtaking wilderness. Also, you can bring in nothing that comes in a can or glass bottle, so the need for preparation (and the dehydrator) increases. You must also be ready to leave your motorboat and electronics at home. The only means of travel is via your own power - paddling, portaging and hiking. And communications? They'll take place around the nightly campfire, no cell service or charger needed.
So as Mr. Bell said, it's all about preparing. Granted, not all of us not are going to be headed north and east for the canoeing trip of a lifetime. But my best guess is we each have a number of things on our respective agendas that require preparations of one kind or another.
The great thing is we don't have to make these preparations without information and support. The staff at Neill Public Library is ready to assist you with what you need for your to-do list or bucket-list. From planning a wedding to rebuilding a car engine; from learning a new language to making a pair of earrings; from writing your novel to constructing a treehouse, we can help you.
So make your way to the library soon. The shelves are teeming with books, magazines, DVDs, and a wealth of online resources, all designed to help you prepare for success.