“No, no sorry, just a bit more to the left. Oh darn- go forward and try again please- that’s got it- good work!”
The work of a remote Northern River outfitter seems to have a great deal to do with the transfer of people and "stuff". Stuff to paddle with, eat with, cook with. Stuff to protect you from the sun, the rain, the wind, the bugs. And of course- the food and drink to sustain everyone. Whether it be Cessnas, Beavers, Otters, ferries, river scows, vans, trucks, rafts or canoes- many of my days are about loading and transporting people and stuff.
One of my goals this summer was to get better at backing up our trailers.
I can do it, albeit, much better when no one is watching me, and much better especially when men aren’t hovering about. Offering to help- out of kindness, or perhaps sympathy, but it was usually easier to accept such offers, than to become proficient myself. Something I wanted to change.
We have several trailers, some 40 ft long, canoe trailers, and one cargo trailer which I refer to as “The Snake”. It truly has a mind of its own when I am trying to back it up, at least in part due to its design. I have watched others put that trailer exactly where they want it to go, but such an ability eluded me.
This brings me back to my opening conversation. I was so very fortunate this summer to work along side an incredible female guide team. I have appreciated their support, their intuitiveness and have been so very impressed with their professionalism and skills. Every bit as tough as their male colleagues (and yes they are paid the same amount!) they accomplish their work with smiles and while caring for others.
As one of them was assisting me to attach one of our trailers a few weeks back, I took note of the conversation- sorry, please and praise were part of it- and a willingness to let me continue to practice and figure this out. They have taught me that it is OK to ask for help, and how to take some time to take care of one self in spite of having so much to do. So, to Micaela, Stephi, Keira, Anna, Justine and Dana- thank you!
As for The Snake- I will continue to need more help to put this trailer where it needs to go.