Getting to know a new trail

Quarry Concord NH

Three weeks ago I injured my left ankle. 

April 14 injured ankle, from twisting it while trail running.

I can finally run but there is lingering sensitivity and I don’t want to push it too hard. I haven’t run long in four weeks. This weekend I am trying for 15 miles. 

Cycling is good, though but the weather isn’t cooperating for tri bike time: cold and windy. Mountain biking has been good this past week. I feel like I can escape the cold and wind a bit better on trails with the mountain bike.

I’ve been mountain biking to the quarry and trying to get familiar with the trails. It’s so cool to see the quarry water. I don’t think I have ever seen one like this, just in the movies. The discovery process of learning trails is so fun; trying to figure out which way to go and how to get back to the water. It’s similar to moving to a new place and getting to know the new trails and roads.

I remember when I moved to Steamboat Spring, I signed up for a trail running series. It turned out that by running all the races I got to know all the trails around Steamboat and the surrounding towns. I met like-minded people and stayed for three years. When I moved to Granby, CO and lived on the slopes of, then called, SolVista I made a game out of skiing every trail in a day, which wasn’t difficult since it was small. The idea of really getting to know a landscape by learning trails is something I’ve always tried to do in all the places I’ve lived.

Even many years later this idea of getting to know a place, to really know it, still appeals to me. Just when I thought I knew everything about Concord, NH I then I discovered this trail. There are no real trail maps of it and the city of Concord doesn’t have a map of it on their website like they do for all the trails. 

While there are so many devastating things happening in the world with the pandemic, to be able to turn the stay at home order into a positive, learning the local trails and getting to know home is one of the positive things about the times we are living in. 

Change of Venue, Writing Rooms, Squash Fear

Today is the first day in awhile I’m not feeling so afraid. At this moment anyway. I think it’s because for the last two mornings I created a to-do list by hour. And, I changed venues.

Yesterday I decided that I would work all day from my writing room (aka spare bedroom). This morning I started early in my new work space, drank coffee, read the news and planned the day. Prior to the new venue I would alternatively work from the kitchen table or the living room sofa. I liked sitting on the sofa with my laptop sandwiched between the two dogs. 

I like the work space I have now and the dogs can either be in this room, the sun room or hangout on my bed. While they are in my bedroom they can look out the window and bark at all the people walking by with their dogs. 

I can’t see the street from my writing room. All I can see are trees and rooftops. Today the sunroom is filled with light and the dogs can go in to soak up the sun while it warms my writing room. 

I’m liking the new work digs and I’m more productive, and maybe a bit happier with a structured routine. My work room has a lot of natural light, there is a coffee mug with pens and plants line the corner of the table. When I turn around I have a map of the world and a raised relief map of the NH 4,000 footers. Also on the wall, is my motivational poster by John Wesley – Do All the Good You Can and a framed picture of Lake Granby (Colorado). I took the picture of the lake during my first week living in Granby, Colorado, most likely in April 2007. It’s the only wall hanging or memorabilia in my house from my years living in Colorado. 

This is a good room – an inspiring space. With my to-do list in front of me outlining calls, webinars, deadlines, a run, a hike and the grocery list, I feel better. Despite all the uncertainty in the world, at this moment I feel like everything may just be okay. Moment by moment we get to where we need to be. 

Change Your Perspective
Move
Write-Read-Reflect
Walk the Dogs

The World is Going Crazy

The economy is plummeting and we are afraid. Afraid of losing our jobs, our homes, our family and more. 

I’m trying not to panic. I’m trying to stay calm. 

I just adopted a dog. I’m only thinking of her, Winnie, my job, my parents, and lastly – training. 

Anne Lamott, my favorite, favorite writer and muse, writes on Facebook today, a repurposed post

“So where do we find grace and light? If you mean right now, try some radical self-care: friendly self-talk, a cup of tea.”

“So how do we shelter in place in the midst of fear and fear? We stick together in our anxiety and cluelessness. We reach out for any help at all; we share any truth and encouragement and humor we come upon. We feed the poor and send money to people who are helping save children around the world. These are good responses. I am going to recommend that we do that today, and tomorrow.”

“Tom Weston taught me decades ago that in the face of human tragedy, we go around the neighborhood and pick up litter, even though there will be more tomorrow. It is another blessed sacraments.”

Today, I will walk to the park across the street and pick up poop. All the poop that appeared when the snow melted. Thanks Anne.

I’m going to work hard. 

I’m going to run.

And I’m going to call my mom.

Hugging your dog helps too.

Paulo Coelho The Hippie, a Book Review

I bought The Hippie from the airport bookstore to read during the flight to Colorado. I was dating a hippie at the time and I like Coelho so I thought it would pass the time in a good way. It was July when I started and November when I finished; I got distracted along the way. 

As he writes about the Magic Bus and the people he meets I find that I’m drawn into all their stories. I was reading it more for the people and learning about them, and not so much about finding a life philosophy. As I read I’m constantly referring to maps to figure out where they are and understand the physical journey. 

The main take-away from this book is learning about the character’s urgings to see the world. I enjoyed reading the stories of men and women who want to take every opportunity to see the world. They are full of hope and want to change the world while having amazing experiences. They start their journey in Amsterdam, stopping in Istanbul as they make their way to Kathmandu. 

Paulo learns from everyone and finally he meets a white-haired man while taking a risk walking into a building. Paulo is in search of knowledge and wisdom. And my favorite quote from the book: 

“A man in search of spirituality knows little, because he reads of it and tries to fill his intellect with what he judges wise. Trade your books for madness and wonder—then you will be a bit closer to what you seek. Books bring us opinions and studies, analyses and comparisons, while the sacred flame of madness brings us to the truth.”

Other quotes I like:
“Salute the sun. Allow it to fill your soul – knowledge is an illusion, ecstacy is the true reality.”

Paulo is in search of dancing and learning the ways of the Sufi. It’s not until I re-read sections to really understand what he is looking for. I like this quote so much.

“Then seek the Truth. Seek always to be on its side, even when it brings you pain. There are times when the Truth goes quiet for long stretches, or when it doesn’t tell you what you want to hear. That’s Sufism.”

“‘The Truth is what makes us free. You will know the Truth and the Truth shall set you free,’ Jesus said.”

“He had entered a state of complete emptiness, and this emptiness, though its inherent contradiction, filled everything.”