I’m grateful for access to clean water where I live. This is something I think way too many people take for granted, and with all the talk about oil and access to it, I think water access is where the most desperate battles are going to be fought in our not-so-distant future. It is part of what is so horrible about what oil companies are trying to do in Canada, with plans to pipe and ship all that dirty tar sands oil through the Great Bear Wilderness. Similar are the debates and battles to stop those huge rigs moving up through Montana and Idaho on Highway 12, which runs parallel to the Lochsa River. Now, my Gratitude Monday posts aren’t intended to be political, which is why I’m not linking to any articles about these issues . . . maybe I will do that another day. All I know is I couldn’t help but think of these battles and the people fighting them as I was going face down in Rattlesnake Creek in the ninth mile of a long, hot, sweaty, smoky hike yesterday for a deep, cool drink. I know you aren’t supposed to drink from mountain streams like Rattlesnake, but I’ve done it dozens of times and I don’t care about that particular “risk.” It was cold and refreshing, and I loved it.
And I was extremely grateful. Many people aren’t so lucky.