Sometimes it means taking a different journey to understand the one you are already on. Right now, I shoot news and music video for a living. For me, photography is about the right time, place and anticipating what might happen next to get the shot while being kind of invisible to do so. Good pictures just kind of happen when you relax and the people in them are themselves.
Still, that job gives me the opportunity to be in new situations everyday because I'll go and see what's there and bring it back. Happy or sad, work sometimes leaves a little baggage behind and I was in one of those moments.
So, when my dad asked if I'd go on a six day trip with him rafting the Grand Canyon, I said, "Sure. That sounds like fun." Not really thinking about it. It was something he always dreamed of doing so I wouldn't dare say I was a little scared before going. For me a vacation with my dad down the Colorado River restored my faith in the people around me and gave me more confidence in myself.
It was laughing, experiencing tremendous beauty, the force of the river and finding out the world has a lot to offer by seeing some of the most impressive parts of it for myself. Most of all, it was being there to see my dad fulfill a dream.
To quote some of my fellow passengers, "Wha-hoo!", "You need to take some more risks in life.", "Look up there! That rock looks like the okee dokie (okay sign), okee dokie.", "Don't forget to look up at the canyon.", "You are lucky, if I did this when I was your age it would've changed my whole life." And the best one, "Thanks for coming with me."
From someone who likes to make sure everyone else is okay and maybe holds on a little too tight at moments, hold on and see what's coming up next down river. Facing some little fears opened up my view of a future with more possibilities.
I'd never been rafting before, flown co-pilot in a helicopter or jumped off a waterfall and was a little frightened in front of new found friends for the jump but, I did it! They cheered.
It's more than getting the best pictures though looking for them was a fun challenge in itself. It's an experience that is worth it and that I will treasure while on every path ahead. I appreciate the joy everyone we shared the trip with gave us and inspiration too.
Rafting the Grand Canyon brings up the best in people.
The guides were great and won't be forgotten. It's a gift they navigate.
I'd recommend getting some good rafting gloves and shoes to take with you and drinking water from the time you wake up in the morning to the time you go to bed at night when you go. Its do-able. Have some fun! I recommend it.
Erica Drehfal – Wisconsin
Want to try rafting the Grand Canyon? Grand Canyon Rafting 6 Day Trip