I am so humbled and appreciative of your
participation in this event, one so near and dear to my heart!
One inspired by the life and loss of
my best friend and teammate Jennifer Andrews!
She became a champion athlete late in life
and no one was more surprised than she!
Joining up with five others to be like the Jamaican bobsled team, doing
an unlikely sport at an unlikely age in an unlikely place.
She was a mother, grandmother, artist and...so funny, spunky,
sparkly and sassy! A vibrant passing light!
She loved this sport more than anything except maybe Holidays!
Easter and Pinwheels a particular favorite.
After long trips to chemo we would encourage her
with gardens of pinwheels!
I talked to Jen daily, sometimes four and five times
and never dreamed she wouldn't beat it
and that I would be without her friendship!
So no one was more stunned than I, when she didn’t!
It unraveled me and I didn’t want to live, and one night in April,
I almost didn’t and while I got in a lot of trouble that night,
it also saved my life!
Some where along the way I decided I needed to live, and REALLY live,
to be wild and passionate about everything in her honor
cause Jen didn’t have that choice and hers is a story, I am commited to tell!
Cancer sucks! But if we learn to live better because of it...it has a purpose!
And those who have crossed over and fought the great fight, have given us
the invaluable gift of thier lives and a lesson to always
celebrate the temporary.
Life is a ride, and as often as possible we must find moments that require a shouted out... WHEE...holding on and seeing where this
amazing ride might take us!
Cause its all we really have...
So lets paddle and have a blast! Thank you!
Minutes later, I am in the boat
sitting seat one...headed into
trying to get my brain around a
seven mile race I haven't even
due to pinwheels on the brain
so not ready...yikes!
not warmed up, forgot water
pinwheels bobbles, still, on my head,
can I even paddle with
Takes a bit not to knock them
off during the changes
but decide I love the spinning sound
and their shadow
on the canoes surface!
Should consider wearing them
for every race!
I feel her everywhere and smile a lot
despite the fatigue and
lack of drinking water!!
We fight it out with Tempe for third place!
but can't beat them.
No matter...it is a beautiful day
so many happy people on the water
and on shore!
Coming into the finish line with the
other boats bobbing and waiting
for us, we ride up over the front
of the winner's canoe
and nearly flip over...
"okay, Jen is that you?
messing with me...cause YOU know
how much I hate a huli?
Always, the funny girl...
Hope you know
this one was for you,
know that you are missed
and oh, so celebrated,
loving you in the wind, Jen!"
Now about next year....
custom made ones, t shirts and lots
of Pinwheel Bobble Bands and what about...
those gingerbread cookies and ....
Pam Piper Rain
For more pics of Paddles and Pinwheels
find me on Facebook