Friday, June 3, 2011


Today is my sister's birthday. She is an amazing lady.

Certified wilderness medicine rescuer. (Almost) certified NOLs rafting guide. Nomad. Vagabond. Wearer of holey pants over high end silk long underwear.

She got a broke ass ancient Bronco, pulling a homemade trailer, from Wyoming to Texas, with the drive shaft held on by baling wire. She says things like "The brakes went out coming over the pass, but I still had the parking brake so I kept going..."

She is a rafting guide in the summer and an ice climber in the winter. A free climber, a trad climber... other kinds I'm sure I don't want to know about. She buried her beloved dog, by herself, on the Wyoming tundra. Breaking ice to dig, and "facing West because Lola always loved the sunset."

She rappelled down a mountain with a baby goat zipped into her North Face jacket. She set her clothes on fire to scare off a mountain lion while illegally camping in a national park. She raced her sailboat, flipped it, and came out of the water laughing about it. When we were little, she cut my hair in my sleep because I put my snake in her bed.

One time she was watching the kids for a couple hours, and when we got home she had sanded and stained our kitchen table.

If she has enough money to buy human food or dog food, guess who's going to be hungry?

If something is easy, you can be absolutely 100% sure Anne will find a hard way to do it. But she'll still do it.

She has a toolbox with hacksaws and plumb bobs and awls, as well as, of course, baling wire.

If she's standing at an intersection in Austin, there's a 50% chance someone's going to pull over and give her some change.

She also makes really great biscotti, and herb bread. And she brought me a package of wild hog meat yesterday, and then cooked it while we were out.

She never met a distressed animal that didn't follow her home. Including rabid tomcats and fox kits. When we were little she taught our parakeet to tightrope walk.

She's the kind of person who, when they come to visit you, leaves all their stuff on the couch and disappears, and then you get a text at night that says "camping on the Comal."

Of course, she's also the kind of person you can call when you need help, and she'll hitchhike to your house, or scam a bus pass, or just walk, but she'll get there. And you can pay her for babysitting in chocolate milkshakes.

And you know, someone saw her kayaking on the Comal the other day and offered her a job, as a kayaking guide.

By the way, if anyone likes the look of this LOVELY moneypit vintage Bronco, dead parked in front of my house... make my sister an offer.

But be generous. It's her birthday!


Will said...

That's a heck of a tribute. Happy birthday, Ann

Sam Myrick said...

this sounds a lot like one of the "Most Interesting Man in the World" Dos Equis commercials.

Jenny Sims said...

This is ABSOLUTELY hilarious!