Gosh, I wasn’t really sure if I was ever going to make it back. Life really moves too fast. Feels like I’ve been riding a roller coaster and I haven’t been able to hop off, most notably for time along the trails. I’ve dreamt of the them though, both awake and asleep. And I’ve wrought myself with guilt over not making it out to some trails (go figure! As if they were a person I am neglecting). With school coming to an end into summer break, I had finals and grades to finish, not to mention the end of school activities for my boys, including a multitude of concerts to attend, one of them all the way up in Santa Clara (which is just south of San Francisco.) I also had one job ending (my job of 17 years shutting its doors) and another job beginning. But most importantly, amidst the hectic business of school ending, we received the sad news that my father-in-law died. The day after school ended, we were on a flight out to Texas to be with family. The trip was bitter-sweet, as we do so much miss the family, not to mention the open grasslands and big, huge Texas skies. Then the day we landed back in California, I was off to teach the first day at my new school.
Finally, I thought probably I could get some time to go out and wander. But then, oh, about three days later, my truck broke down. Well, we’re making it with one car for the time being (a big old SUV that I’m not used to driving) until hubby meets his work deadlines so he has time to fix my truck (the alternator we suspect).
Without a car, there was not much motivation to get out and run, especially since I had been off for so long, and we had edged our way into a heat wave (surprise, surprise – it’s summer!). I really cannot bear the heat anymore, real or imaginary (and there’s been plenty of imaginary). All the while during this hiatus however, I continued working out at the gym, hoping, so hoping, that it would keep me fit enough to wander in the wilderness like I so yearned. I kept imagining, actually wondering, seriously wondering, whether I’d be able to run at all. Fortunately, this mystery was solved Wednesday afternoon, when I convinced my oldest son to head out to Top of the World with me in the late afternoon. (As you can tell from the picture above, he was noticeably excited about hitting some trails with Mom).
I was seriously shocked that I was able to run along West Ridge to Top of the World. True, I hiked the steeper hills, and I sweated it out big time. Struggling felt good. And thankfully, we had an onshore breeze (which is the breeze coming off the ocean, which equates to a cool breeze). We didn’t do many miles, a little more than five over rolling hills. Five is good for me. When it was all done, I thought, heck, the time off really didn’t hurt me that much. But it did. The next two days, my quads ached, and I was a little sore all over. But I’d have to say that it was a good ache. I may be aging (more rapidly it seems now) and on the heavy side (much more than I thought I would be), but I can still get out there and put in some time on trails that make me ache some. And that’s what much of the trails is really about – the struggle and the ache. Where there is beauty, there is often agony.
Dang flash, kept going off – this was the best shot I could get