09 Jul Expect the Unexpected
When we talk about always being flexible and always expecting the unexpected, that’s what happens regularly here at First State National Historical Park (NHP). While I am no stranger to traveling to the unknown, the anxiety is still there. I knew where I was going, what I was going to do, at least the main picture-haha. I can’t help but think of transportation and coordination but most importantly the work culture environment. From the start Latino Heritage Internship Program and the staff at First State NHP were communicative. That welcoming behavior has not changed since day zero. I still remember my first day, when I was already translating signage for Memorial Day weekend to cooling off while writing this after doing an emergency cleanup of a tree that was knocked down from the storm. When I was packing back home in Colorado, I was packing for various situations. I packed all my camping/ backpacking gear to every possible combination of business casual attire I could pack. Looking back now, did I overpack? Yes, absolutely. But it’s ok because I would rather prepare for anything I can do when being blessed with this opportunity. With that being said, it’s never a true experience if something doesn’t go according to plan. That’s where all the fun is!
That small detour in my grand packing plan was canoe training. Granted that I had wet weather gear in case field days got wet, but I had no canoe experience on top of being a terrible swimmer. As the classroom part ended, my palms started to sweat, my arms got heavy as I got into the kayak. As awkward as it could have been, I used my skateboard balance skills to not flip it over -what a win for the noob! By the end of the training, I was much more comfortable in the kayak and canoe, so we decided to travel down Brandywine Creek. This led to a lesson in recognizing the hazards of a river and navigating water recreation safely and responsibly… as a tree snapped 100 feet away, from where we were originally going to stop…. wild luck right there. I have always wanted to kayak, but not having a way to learn, put that want on hold until now. I see this as a walk phase in the crawl, walk, and run stages. When I get back home, I can continue my skills and eventually run on the white rivers of Colorado.