Saturday, May 22, 2010

14,600 Mornings Together....

As I slowly faded out of slumber back into this new day I lay very still in bed. I listened to the soft sounds of breath coming from within 12 inches of my left ear.

I did not move much as I rolled over and looked at the face I have seen on a pillow beside me for the most of 14,600 of so mornings in our mornings together.

I smiled as I thought of this incredible life we have as one….hand in hand down this path of life sharing all that comes our way. We share a common love born of commitment & determination to find the best out of the good—bad—and ugly.

We survive and have grown by finding our own way through this thicket of life’s miracles—surprises—and disappointments. We always try to end each day with a kiss…no matter what might not have gone as planned or desired that day.

We love our children with every ounce we can muster no matter what. Yet, we never let our attention to them diminish the joy we share with each other.

We share miles of sidelines and finish lines. We shared victory together and planned to work harder to do better the next time out.

She is there when I ride off for my mountain miles and listens to my tall tales of travel when I return.

I love my mate….my lover….my friend….my joy!

Tomorrow brings the 1st day on the next 14,600 days together…..

LuLu my rock…my beacon….my light….

You make dust…..each & every day….


Saturday, May 15, 2010

The Joy of Movement--Pure & Simple

As I sliced through the cool crisp mountain air this morning high on the Blue Ridge Parkway I thought of two things.

1. I glanced at my Garmin 305 and it rather succinctly indicated that I was flying down the northern decent after Groundhog Mountain at 39 miles mph.

2. I banished all thought of a crash from my mind as the pure endorphin rush hit as my speed peaked.

As the Parkway leveled off I spun my pedals at a good steady cadence as I rolled along America’s most scenic and traveled 469 mile National Park. I was passed by cars & motorcycles as we rolled in unison toward our whatever’s. Yet as I rolled along I felt the inner exhilaration that those on some sort of motor vehicle will never feel.

You see on this perfect mountain morning my movement came from within. I was the force of movement. I determined how far or how fast I was to go. Nothing came without my effort. I could never feel the high of a 38 mph decent if I hadn’t worked really hard pedaling my ass off up the incline to get to the top.

No secrets here. Pure and simple effort—from within—was needed to shake off all gravitational force to get me over the crest. The reward of moving to the center of the road for the headlong decent into the place where fear is conquered and no crash happens to screw up a glorious moment.

Having said all of the above, I truly marvel at all shapes and sizes of truly outrageous places I have experienced great moments of joy as I ran, biked, canoed or crawled thru flora/fauna/stream/lake/mountain & desert alike.

For the past 30 years I awake each day wondering what new joy will I see—smell—touch or embrace as I self propel my 200 pound self thru urban jungles or smooth forest paths. I am truly blessed to have met so many of you along these highways & byways to share moments of great movement together.

I think not on the day that it all might end. I simply choose not to stray too far without running shoes near or my 14 pound red Tommaso beast at ready for the next ride.
Look forward to all of our next movements together……where ever they may be.


Saturday, May 8, 2010

On Rhubarb..a Taste Never Forgotten!

OK….this is going to require a little work. Not too much mind you….just a bit.

So close your eyes. Now think back to your childhood days and think of something you ate that tasted so outrageously different that you have never forgotten that very unique & special taste. Think hard there had to be something. This is about mine.

As I write this I’m watching a pot cooking on the stove. This pot contains something that I picked in the garden this morning. The smell easily and quickly brings me back to days in Maine when I watched my Mother cook the very same thing….the very same way.

Yet back then I picked this gem and ate most of it well before it ever made it to the cooking pot. I picked the stalks and then quickly got a small saucer and filled it with sugar. I then wet the bottom of the stalk with my tongue…dipped it in the sugar and bit into that baby. WOW…..that taste was a mouthful of tart/sweetness that lit up every taste bud in my happy mouth and we made funny faces.

Rhubarb is a wonderful plant! Yep that is what I’m watching cook on LuLu’s stove. I have been waiting for this harvest for the past three years. Why three years, well rhubarb should only be harvested in its third growing season.

Rhubarb is a perennial plant which forms large fleshy rhizomes and large leaves with long, thick (and tasty) petioles (stalks). Rhubarb stalks are commonly found in supermarkets, fresh rhubarb is prized by gourmet cooks. Some folks say the finest quality rhubarb is grown in Michigan, Ontario, Canada, and other northern states such as Maine in the United States.
Rhubarb loves cold weather. Rhubarb works here in the mountains of southwest Virginia because we are above 3,000 feet and our winters are cool to cold.

Rhubarb is good for you and contains a fair source of potassium, contributes minor amounts of vitamins, and is low in sodium. Rhubarb's crisp sour stalks are rich in vitamin C, dietary fiber and calcium. Rhubarb is somewhat acidic (pH 3.1-3.2) but in most recipes this is normally offset by sugar. One cup diced Rhubarb contains about 26 calories.

OK…….waiting is over. It’s a glorious May Saturday afternoon and I have three scoops of fresh vanilla ice crème just waiting for the warm rhubarb sauce to be poured on top.

Heavenly! I’m in the rhubarb time machine & loving every bit of it and still making funny faces!

Rhubarb makes dust…….


Friday, May 7, 2010

On Acceleration.....

my morning run only confirmed: I am no longer plagued by any Toyota-like "unexplained acceleration".....or any acceleration for that matter!.....:)