It would take me until the last day and a thoughtful 10k to come to several realizations about the unexpected effects various aspects of the festival were having on me.
Walking through Adventure Village with Skye on the last day, dodging strollers and almost being taken out by toddlers, I realized how many of the activities that I had looked forward to sharing with Skye,that were ones that she had either outgrown or had already experienced.
She had been on more climbing walls than I can recollect and had been climbing and rappelling with the Girl Scouts on real rocks.
They had a small slackline demo set-up along side several balance boards.
We actually own a slackline, although it is in storage. As for balance boards, it was one of the many skills she learned at the Circus Arts Institute back in Atlanta.
The kayak demonstrations were full of adorable kids. And Skye would have been adorable and had a great time at it, when she was eight or nine. But she's about to turn 14, so she was more into checking out the boys on the bikes than all the "family-friendly" fare that I had been excited about sharing with her.
My little girl is growing up.
Better Venues Out There
There were several things that I had imagined being one way, but with the benefit of hind-sight, I can see the impracticality of my visions.
I was excited to give Stand Up Paddle Boarding a try. I saw myself on a beautiful alpine lake gliding along the surface, not in a man-made pond in the middle of hotels and retail stores.
Meanwhile, I remembered that a friend of ours in LA owns a couple of boards and has more than once invited me to give it a try.
The zip-line they had rigged up over the river would have been awesome for Skye, had she not already zip-lined a hundred feet up in the rainforests of Nicaragua.
One of the things that Skye and I did while in Atlanta was a Sparta Dash with the longest mud pit I'd ever been in, and I've been in more than a few.
Even though I had signed up for the mud run, once I saw that there were no other obstacles and the temperature dropped and rain started coming down, I decided it wouldn't be worth the time or effort and opted out.
One of the free competitions that I read about prior to the event, that had intrigued me was a contest that involved loading up a car with gear using the Thule rack system.
I was a little concerned that I would lose my edge because I had a Yakima set-up on the Rav-4. Then I saw what the competition entailed...
Threading and then yanking straps down on a pre-loaded kayak, placing one bike in the rack, and tossing two bags in the cargo box, taking less than a minute.
Again not nearly the challenge I had anticipated.
A couple of nights, after tramping around Vail and the games, snapping off pics and videos with my point-and-shoot and camera phone, I would download them and try to figure out which shots best captured this event or the other.
And then Skye would get on the computer and download the dozens of shots she had taken.
In the meantime, I would be getting updates via facebook or some other social-media app showing the same events through the eye of a professional photographer armed with state-of-art equipment and access granted the media.
I finally realized that I should enjoy the event more and for my reasons, and worry less about getting the perfect shot or video to post on the internet.
It was however a great learning experience for Skye, seen here elbow to elbow with the pros.
Once I accepted this, I had a much more relaxing and enjoyable time.
Ironically, I say that as I wait for one of Skye's videos to upload on You-tube and type up this blog while Skye patiently waits for me to finish so we can get on the road to Vegas.
More pics, clips, links and stories to follow.