Thursday, March 31, 2005
Wednesday, March 30, 2005
Tuesday, March 29, 2005
Sunday, March 27, 2005
Wednesday, March 23, 2005
Over this immaculate blur of spring break, I indulged with seven days of riding at Alyeska…. “I would like to take this moment to thank my mother and father for footing the bills of those $50 lift tickets…” I kid, I kid, it was $33, but seriously while up in the crevasse of mountain life (or so I would like to think), I was also able to experience another form greatness; the greatness which exists at the Challenge Alaska adaptive ski school. There you will find dedicated, passionate ski/snowboard bums from all walks of life who donate their time to enhancing the learning environment for students of all ages. In return as a volunteer you get to log some riding time of your own… Deals like these folks, work for everyone. I can’t even begin to explain the amazing energy, and drive that many of the students have. Although wearing the name tag of disabled around ‘regular’ life their enjoyment goes above and beyond many of the temporary able bodied people I have come across. There is something to be said for tackling a seemingly steep mountain, one that made me so afraid of skiing that I often would call my mom for support, (thanks for being there, Mom) Ok, so maybe that is a stretch, but really, I give much credit and admiration to those individuals who dare to dream and more importantly make that dream a reality. I walk away with changed perspectives and ambitions, in a world that is so full of chaotic nature its grand to know that a little volunteering goes a long way…
Do what you can, with what you have, where you are…
Tuesday, March 22, 2005
Monday, March 21, 2005
Van Morrison couldn’t have said it better in his song “These are the days”…. Although he probably wasn’t talking of winter or the possibilities of deep pow…
There are times in your life that you feel more alive than others… Times that you can begin to associate a feeling with a mental picture. Until this very fine day I no clue for association of the glory those infamouns smiling faces were experiencing in ski magazines. For all I knew they could be worked like a horse, wielding metal and fiberglass boards through concrete… But the reality is quite the opposite, its rather delicious. Imagine yourself in a Venn Diagram, somewhere between flying and falling, yeah, that’s about right; how you feel, slipping irresistibly through the snow watching the world as you know blur by. Weeks ago my thighs were burning in agony, begging for rest, but they’ve learned to accept, appreciate and relish in the mad glory of the snow, embracing its challenges and leaving the pansy that once was… behind. It is through this glorious experience that I can fully captivate and marvel in the understanding of all those smiles you see on the videos… Sure not all days are like this, but when the snow is deep, and sky is blue there are few things in the world that would come close for a fair trade…
Get out & Giver!!
Sunday, March 20, 2005
That delicious time of year that drives young adults everywhere CRAZY…. SPRING BREAK 2005!!! PARTY!? So unlike the majority of folks on MTV’s exploitation of youngsters in tropical places, I traded those ambitions for a journey 211 miles from the mighty city of
Not to be a cynical person, but there are a lot of COASTAL cities around, but rest assured Homer AK, is THE place, mark it, where the land meets the sea. Ok, I’ll stop. Drive in was grand, becoming more and more impressive the further away from
Overall impression rates Homer as a fairly swank town (in the my opinionated view anyhow). Cool little art/music scene, delicious bagels and salmon products, if you are into that. (I am all about it in case you were wondering) Although I wasn’t fit for posing in Tropicana commercials with scantly dressed youngsters, I did get to log copious miles of beach walking along the ocean…
Unfortunately the photos can’t do true justice, but I try. Well I’d love to rave more, but there is some mad powder falling north in the mountains meaning, there’s a good chance that’s where I’ll be at….shortly…
Hope your weather is bountiful and glorious…
Saturday, March 19, 2005
Thursday, March 17, 2005
Wednesday, March 09, 2005
Good times here in Las Anchorage, warm winds from the south, festive feelings, and wildlife that roams the campus…
I am pleased to announce that the intelligence factor of students here on the APU campus covers the full gamut from genius to not so genius, myself falling somewhere in the middle. On this fine March evening, I was accompanying four other enthusiastically (intelligent) hooligans to the dorm from a Northern Light photo presentation sans a care in the world. Little did we know (mostly me) we were about to encounter one of
May your lessons be educational and times merry…
Monday, March 07, 2005
“Hey…Hey… Welcome to the Tour of Anchorage” – a loud radio style voice boomed over the large speakers as the stadium went wild… “Brian, Brian, do you have all your stuff?” asked a fellow skier… Oh yeah, my day dream had been broken as I slid up to the start line…
The cold of the morning, anticipation, anxiety, and knowledge of other people hitting the slopes plagued my being on this sixth day of March… A day I have been dreading all semester… Ski race day. Not any ski race mind you (not a Birkie either – sorry Paul, I am still a pansy) a 25K monster… Some lady screamed “GO”, shot a friggen twelve gauge or something, and that’s just what I did, I went… One hour and forty six minutes later I arrived 15 miles from whence I started.
All I can think about is the deliciously dressed skiers in their tight…TIGHT… suits, wowsers that were a sight all right, a hideously uncomfortable sight… I kid, I kid, but I will say I will never be one of you hardcore elite’s. I will stay content with the mind battle one faces as they glide somewhat effortlessly across the trail to a final destination. As I did what I could to keep moving, I became detached from the world around me, heading down hills, through tunnels, passed others (lots of em… (insidious newbie laughter inserted here)) Not giving a dam for anything until I crossed that finish line. I can do this, this skiing thing isn’t that hard, and then fate met me face on, a 10K sign… “WHAT!? This is an OUTRAGE!!! I have been skiing for a while, and only gone 10K!?” I knew I needed to change my pace, slow it down a tad… Only later figuring that meant only 10K left, I was in the home stretch. I realized this after I placed a ski pole on the inside of my skis (only advanced pros try this) while looking up at an airplane (no I don’t have ADD)… As I tumbled off the trail, a dozen or so brightly colored irresistible people skied by, I hopped back on the pony (figure of speech, there really wasn’t a pony) and sped off towards the finish… Passing back all those ‘pros’ and taking the last 4K in stride as it was all up hill… I raced into an arena of outdoor ski enthusiasts and skied down the shoot to hear “(insert your name here)” oh wait that’s me, “Brian Castillo”…. The crowd went wild… this only because my pants had fallen around my knees… Just making sure you’re all still with me… And it was over.
Grand experience, delicious bread, food, beverages awaited in a warming lodge as the rest of the skiers from this monstrous event filtered in. Cool thing was I didn’t even feel that cashed, and with this experience behind me, there is no telling what I will do next. Probably focus on utilizing these here mountains and riding the goods.
The hour is late on this fine day
So I’ll disappear into the abyss
Cut it short
As I have nothing left to say…
Do what you can
With what you have
Where you are
Saturday, March 05, 2005
Will someone please explain to me where those tongues go when their mouth's are closed?
copyright castillo 2005
More to howl about than just warm weather up in Anchorage...
copyright castillo 2005
Welcome to Saturday March 5th, 2005!!!
Just seven days away from the the largest Canoe and Kayak Exhibition in the world... and I am here bringing you news of an 1049 mile dog sled race from Anchorage to Nome Alaska, where are my priorities?
This morning the cerimonious start of the Iditarod Dog Sled Race kicked off. What seemed like millions, (probably thousands) of people lined the streets of downtown Anchorage this morning to watch all 79 dog teams commence their mighty journey into the vastness of the Alaskan wilderness. We parused through the crowded streets in attempts to getting some decent shots. Although my beloved could not be with me today (80-200mm Nikon AF 2.8 lens) me and the rest of my crew went on in hopes of capturing the moment. Had I really thought about it I would have momentarily woken up much earlier and gotten a better spot. there were copious amounts of people making it extremely hard to get up close and personal. Anchorage's finest were out there protecting the people and disturbing the peace, err I mean keeping the peace.
The dogs, were much smaller than I had imagined. All highly energetic and wearing booties, I could only fathom what it would be like spending days on trail keeping each one entertained as nightfall fell and darkness settled all around. Definitely not this guy for the job. At any rate there are some photos up and about, to have a gander at...
Hope all is well an exciting in your time zone, and may the weather not be unseasonably mild...