On Saturday morning, I floated down the French Broad River in a blow-up tube. My boyfriend and I were shuttled to the drop-off spot, and then we placed our tubes in the water to float downstream back to our car. The estimated trip time was two and half to three hours, and we were shocked by this approximation.
However, when we sat in the tubes and let the water take us afloat, it all made sense: we were hardly moving anywhere. The rapids were, in fact, not moving rapidly.
As we relaxed in our tied-together tubes, my toes soaked in the water and the sun blazed rays onto my forehead. The sound of the water synchronized with the cradling of my floating device. I was in a peaceful place.
This relaxing adventure was somewhat challenging for us though. We enjoy relaxing, but not for too long. How were we to sit (just sit) for two and a half to three hours?
After a while, we realized that we wanted to move a little quicker than the water guided us. My boyfriend had an oar, so he worked with the water to pull us along. Despite his efforts, we still managed to get stuck in the rocks several times. The same guy kept passing us on his tube, and we laughed the whole way.
I learned a few things on that float down the river:
- Tubing experiences are very contingent on the river’s rapids.
- As long as you are with someone you want to spend time with, tubing will elicit laughter and peace.
- Like a tube, life moves at its own pace; Even if you try to change the speed, you have limited control.
I have tried to accelerate time, and I have also tried to slow it down. This past weekend was one I wish I could have put in slow motion. However, time moves at its own rhythm. We can soak in the moments or push through them with our oars, but either way, the river will move as it pleases.
Life can get complicated, and we can find ourselves sitting in a tube–unsure of where the river will take us and at what pace.
But we must stay afloat. And we can.
It just takes a little bit of acceptance and a new perspective.
I loved tubing down the French Broad, and I learned a little bit about life too 🙂