Amy says I have a great memory. I have a virtually unlimited supply of useless facts about such critically important topics as the definition of Qapla' ("success" in Klingon) and Tierra Del Fuego (the answer to any question about islands in the blind hope I'm right).
However, I often forget lessons taught to me only through the application of pain.
When it comes to adventure, these lessons often fall into two broad categories:
1) Things I shouldn't try to do because holy-cow-they-hurt and
2) Things I shouldn't try to make the kids do.
In the first category are lessons like "75 miles with a 50 pound pack in five days is too much" and "Mailbox in under 90 minutes is for the mentally infirm."
The second category is really what this is all about. On Monday, I was home with the kids after dropping Amy on some random beach in Eastern Washington. The drive from Chelan to wherever it was turned the usual three hour trip home into something closer to four and a half hours. We stopped for a hike and to do SCIENCE, but it was still a LONG drive. I should have remembered past attempts to push the kids past their tolerance for my passion, but I didn't.
So while our objective was the Kachess Beacon about 15 miles east of Snoqualmie Pass, we wound up getting only about a quarter the way up the trail when we all realized (me being the last to realize) that nobody was having fun and we should bail. (Technically, Treen was still having fun, but sometimes she's a little dimmer than me.)
Down by the trailhead we found a few berries and decided we'd eat at a little waterfall just down the other trail that started at the same trailhead. It was a lot warmer than the last time I was there so we frolicked in the spray and threw rocks and ate PBJs. Even though it had taken me too long to see the obvious, we managed to salvage something of the afternoon and we all had smiles when we got back in the car for the ride home. Now if only I knew the right time to try to get back up to the Beacon...