Friday, September 25, 2009

Karina...

There is this women, Karina, who has an amazing Gluten Free recipe website/blog, her recipes are so good, I collect them. But what's also amazing about her blog are her own personal wanderings and thoughts. Today she wrote down some little black and white words that resonated with me to the point where I'm nodding in agreement, so I wanted to share them on my blog. Also check out her recipes, they're delicious, there's a link at the bottom!

As the breakfast treats were baking I started thinking (always dangerous). I started pondering (even more dangerous) why certain people believe they have things AFO. All Figured Out. And they'll tell you so, of course, spooning out advice in words that taste metallic. Like teeth fillings. They have all the neat little answers for you, judged and predigested, wrapped snug in tidy ribbons.

If only life were that simple.


Don't get me wrong. I'm not yearning for simple. I'm not six years old. I can handle complicated. I can chew for hours on ideas that are tough and wiggly and mysterious, and arrive at no final conclusion whatsoever. I can sleep on it and wake up with nothing but songs and dreams in my head that will color the day with glimpses of what might be possible. I don't need to hammer the challenging and mysterious into a mold I can easily grasp so I can feel more comfortable in the world, believing it is fixed. So I can stop asking questions. So I can say, I have the answer.

I am, in fact, okay hanging in the tension of opposites.

I don't need only good, only pretty, only nice, only light, only clean, only sweet, only happy. And isn't that a valuable thing? Because the last time I checked the world was a mash-up of good and bad, beautiful and ugly, gentle and cruel, luminous and dark and cool and filthy and calm and angry and laughable and profoundly, deeply sad. And often, really ironic.

So here's the thing.

The older I get, the more I learn, the less certain I am. Of anything. I don't have all the answers. I don't always know what is best or what is true. And what is right for me may not be right for you. And what may be right for me today may be wrong for me tomorrow. But one thing I do know?

There are places on this earth where you feel you belong. And places you will always feel like a stranger. An outsider. A tourist. There are places and people and days that grind you down. And harden you. And there are places and people and days that soften you. Soften your heart. And you know what?

I want that.

Amen to that Sistah!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Solo

Sometimes you feel like you're exactly where you need to be at exactly that moment. Today I rode by myself in the autumn chill. I was grateful for the sunshine that came before and after the cool rain that fell on me, for the rainbow afterwards. For the quiet stillness, the smell of earth and leaves in the air, the sound of my own breath. I was happy to be there in those moments, in my own company, enjoying the autumn prelude solo.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

September's Fally..

It's Fall again, my favorite season, so uplifting even with the transition into winter. In some places the leaves have already come off the trees and carpet the forest floor in gold. Here are some pictures of our weekend ride up high.

Jim and I taking a little break..

Craig and Baird.

Emma's rear brake began to fail part way into the ride, bummer.

Our next cold front coming in. This would lead to snow at the house this morning.
Transitions.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Meeting Goals...

After a very wet and cold Saturday, Sunday dawned sunny and bright at the house. Our plan for the day was to meet some friends (Emma, Scott, Randy and Suzanne) and ride the PW DH. Well it's not all a DH, there's plenty of yummy tight, technical and rocky climbing to be had first off then you get rewarded with a long and challenging DH, perfect in my book. And with the rain the trail would be perfect tacky bliss. I've also had a goal for PW since the spring, there's a natural rock drop out there, it's about 4.5 feet in height, to a flat landing between two trees. You need enough speed on the drop to clear the base of the rock as it slopes out at the bottom, it's not as straight forward as my lumber drops at home and elsewhere, it has some texture to it for a lack of a better descriptive word. Craig and Dan had done it once before and I put it on my to do list with the thought that I needed more practice with larger drops.
So when we got to the area of the drop Craig went off it first. I was wanting to do it, knew I could do it, I had confidence and asked Craig if I could follow him in so I could gauge my speed needed to clear the drop as well as miss the trees on either side of the landing. The entrance into the drop is flat as well so you have to pedal hard to get your speed up. Yesterday was the day and I stomped it, quite literally as the landing was a bit harsh since it's flat with no transition but it felt good and I was stoked. Emma caught it all on video, thanks Emma! Of course it doesn't look as tall or as interesting as it does in person but I'm proud of myself for reaching this personal goal this year, I wanted to make sure I did it this summer and I have, sweet!

video
PW Drop Down (Video taken by Emma Young)

The other feature Craig noticed while riding up and we noted for the return DH was a rock roller. This thing was sweet, steep, narrow entrance to a blind and steepish exit, it was cool and tall too. I love riding trails that have natural features to play on.

video
Rock-n-Roller (Video taken by Emma Young)

The ride was a blast, I felt on and my head was in my game..riding with confidence always feels good. The rest of the ride felt tight too, nailing tricky switch backs with ease, these types of riding days come along once in awhile, just to add some stoke to your ride and your experience, it was an awesome day out there pedaling with friends, almost perfect.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Full Circle..

Matching C & C Raspberries
(photo credit: Jen Kwasniewski)

Labor Day found us this year in Winter Park at the Trestle Bike Park with Kim, Dan, Jen, Jesper, Josh and his friend Jason. Craig and I had met Kim and Dan for the first time just over a year ago, our first of many rides together was at Keystone Bike Park. In two weeks time Kim and Dan are moving back to Michigan, sad for us but good for them as that's where their hearts seem to be. So Kim and Dan kindly and generously invited us out to play at Winter Park and I'm so glad they did because it was FUN! It may be our last ride with them for a while, our time together seems to have come full circle.
The group of us rode together really well, everyone in good spirits. I played it a bit conservative with the memory of my concussion from last year at Keystone, be smart, listen to your body, look at things first and I still managed to dive off a wall ride and skid to a landing on my left hip, nice hematoma as seen in the picture. Craig also managed to get some new scars as well, quite the pair we are. Winter Park is more free ride/slopestyle in its breeding, however the Trestle Run DH course is awesome. Rooty, rocky, technical chaos, just the kinda stuff I love to ride, very demanding but so much fun. Sometimes I wonder how my riding would be if I was on a free ride bike, faster I think for sure. The only down side to riding at a Park is it makes me want to ride at Parks more often and a lift ticket ain't free and that would also mean a Park bike, something I'd love to get for myself but something I can't afford right now at all. So I'll keep rocking it on my BLT until I can save up enough to make that dream come true and I'll keep riding the Pleasure Park on our property, we finished two new drops this weekend, the overall vision is getting closer to fruition. Abundant gratitude to Kim and Dan for giving us the experience and the pleasure of hanging out with everyone on a beautiful Labor Day in the mountains on our bikes.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Recess!

Blurry Me..what you can't see is the chunky, droppy section I just rode down, fun!
[photo by Eddie Clark]

Got out for some riding this week with mi amigo Eduardo, more commonly know as Eddie Clark. It was relaxing and a lot of fun as I don't get to see or ride with Eddie too much these days. He's very busy building his career as a professional photographer and he's very good, but that's entails a lot of traveling for him. On this day though we got out for some fun and a few casual shots of us playing around on the rocks.


Chucky Monkey!
[Photo by Eddie Clark]


[Photo by Eddie Clark]

Eddie Dropping In..he can take great pictures and ride his bike really well!

Dress Up..

Dress by Sarah Zins

I don't wear dresses, hardly ever, really never have except for certain special occasions but I must say I think this dress is quite lovely, the shape, the design and the color. I'm usually quite happy acquiring new gear for riding but this dress makes me wish I had some where I needed to go that requires a bit of dressing up.