Welcome to my blog...

Here's where you will find the latest on what's going on with my books and the movie. It's also a great place to ask questions, where I recommend other books, and post different things bouncing around in my head. Look me up on Facebook and if you want to buy, signed, discounted, copies of my books, head over to http://www.ryannwattersbooks.com/.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Even Authors Take a Break!

YES! That's me there on the bow leading the way and paddling through air as my family and I shoot through the rapids near Glacier National Park in Montana.

My vacation is coming to a close as I sip some java, early in the morning on my last day, here at a friend's house in Portland, Oregon. We started out flying into this same city almost two weeks ago. I was able to visit with Corey Wolfe (whom I had never met in person), the cover artist for book one, and we discussed some of my ideas for book two. Then it was off to Seattle, Washington where we wandered through Pike's Place Market, taking in the unique sounds, sights, and smells - bountiful bundles of flowers, the fish men yelling and throwing recent catch through the air to ring up for customers, fruit of all shapes and sizes. For lunch we made our way to the top of the Space Needle for an awesome lunch, the dining area spinning around twice during our two hours for a great view of the city and port. Then after lunch we took the famous "Duck" tour (you can see more at www.ridetheducks.com), essentially a land and sea tour of the city, with your bus turning into a boat along the way!

Then it was off to Levenworth, Washington for a stay in this quaint Bavarian village before the drive into Idaho. We stayed in the panhandle of Idaho on Priest Lake at a cabin resort called Elkins Lodge and Resort. We had a really fun two story cabin, just across a little creek, overlooking the lake. In the morning we woke at 5:15 am (this is vacation?) to meet our fishing guide and head out to the deep waters of Priest Lake. We caught four decent size Lake Trout (similar to Salmon) before "the weather started getting rough" (insert gingle of Gilligan's Island), and caught one more and released before heading in. Let me tell you... Lake Trout on the open grill, baked "Idaho" potatoes, and green beans never tasted so good. Did I mention we went Huckleberry picking as well? Mmm... Mmm... good!

After checking out a few days later, we rented a boat for ourselves at the Marina and spent the day tubing in the chilly waters and zooming up and down this huge lake with the mountains all around us. As the sun began to set, we returned our speedboat and jumped back in the rental van for the next leg in our trip - Montana!

Montana was probably the most impressive topography we saw during our trip. The mountains were huge, small interesting towns, very few people, and lots of rugged open country. We found our home for the next few days... a dude ranch call The Bar W, in Whitefish, MT. We stayed on the top floor of a large cabin, built by the Head Dude (I believe he's actually referred to as a "wrangler"). Forty horses roamed the pastuer in front of our cabin, which was surrounded by woods and mountains and a lake. Early in the morning we all went down to feed and brush the horses (I volunteered the kids to shovel the horse manure, which didn't go over very well) and were assigned our horses. My son, Kyler rolled his eyes as one of the wranglers shouted out his horses name... "wimpy." In retrospect, he was very happy with the selection as his horse performed very well. I on the other hand was given "Tiny."

What I came to find out is that wranglers have a sense of humor in naming horses. Mine was by far the largest horse (part Clydesdale) and very flighty (this after telling them that they might have seen me in the movie "City Slickers"). With several other families involved, some as far away as England, we saddled up and road out to the corral to get used to our horses. It was amazing how the group concensus after only a few minutes was, "don't get near Tiny he has a kicking problem." I'm not a big horse person and really only participate to be part of the family activity, so I wasn't very excited about my prospects for this two-hour ride. I should have been more worried about my bride! Towards the end of the ride as we were coming down the mountain, Tiny backed up into her horse at a stop and kicked. I pulled back hard on the reins to bring him under control, but when I turned around I saw Kim scrunching her face in pain... Tiny had kicked her in the shin... ouch!

It was only when the ride was over and we were discussing her going in to ice her leg (thankfully no broken bones) that we discovered our camera was missing. It must have fallen out of my pocket along the trail somewhere. While Kim headed in to ice her leg, Kara (my 13 year old daughter) and I headed back on foot to retrace our steps. We are a BIG picture family and love to look over family trips photos, so I was distraught over the fact that all the pictures we had taken in places we would probably never get back to, were potentially lost. Kara was a trooper and it took us over 1-1/2 hours to walk the trail. We didn't find the camera then, but... we did take the time to pray while we walked and talked together. A few hours later I decided to walk the trail again. While I was headed up the mountain searching one of the wranglers and three riders were headed down and had found our camera fifty yards or so ahead of where I was. Praise God!

Our last day at the ranch we had two fun opportunities. One you saw above, in white water rafting. The other was getting the chance to ride a helecopter for an hour over the Glacier National Park. What an awesome way to view God's creation. We flew up to 9,000 feet, close to the tops of the snow capped peaks. My son and I went on one ride and then the girls and my wife went on another one. On their they even hovered over a moose crossing a river!

More to follow... I'm off to play for the day before we fly the long "red eye" flight back to Orlando, Florida.

1 comment:

Alassiel said...

Now you've made me really jealous! I'm glad you had an awesome trip.

High School student, Jason Derfuss films a summary video of book 1