Tag Archive | nature

Memorial Day Biking

This weekend, people take time to reflect on what Memorial day means to them. Or they sit by a pool, or maybe plunge their hands into dirt and plants. This weekend we did a bike trip. Like any outdoor activity, it’s a bit dodgy because you never know who the weather will turn out. This year was great for the northeast. WP_20140525_001
It was a great ride, from Washington Crossing PA to a town called Upper Black Eddy on the Delaware, about 30 miles north. Our plan was to bike up to the Inn, rest up a bit and then look around a bit. The weather was beautiful. We didn’t bank on hitting what seemed like a few thousand miles of gravel and a fairly untamed towpath. That put the brakes on, literally. The trip took much longer and was more grueling than I would have preferred. I don’t really like gruel or grueling things so the gravel was a bit of a nuisance. The views were still amazing, even through sweat smeared glasses.

We finally arrived at the Inn, a wonderful historic place on the edge of town called the Indian Rock Inn. It was going on five o’clock and we were sweaty, hungry and tired. More than tired I think. WP_20140526_004
After stumbling in, mumbling my name and receiving a real actual key which opened the door. We took showers, had a nice dinner which probably was not appreciated, and were asleep by 9.30.
The next day after a good breakfast and about 11 hours of sleep we were ready to head back. Oh, and don’t forget the Motrin. That was a key ingredient at both dinner and breakfast.
The trip back, thanks to some good planning and riding mostly on the much better maintained NJ side, went quickly. In no time, After lots of sweating and huffing and puffing, I was back in my own house on my couch with my kitties.
I wonder sometimes what possesses me to do these things, when I could be sitting in my swinging bench under my pear tree with a book. I guess we all have to have a bit of insanity in our decision making.


Technology and Padded Pants

You might think this title doesn’t make sense. It does. Really. This past weekend, well starting Thursday actually, my boyfriend and I took a four-day biking trip in Pennsylvania. It sounded good. We drove to Pittsburgh, a five hour trip, and then parked and started biking to our first destination for that evening. It wasn’t a far ride. It would have been even shorter had we not gone the wrong way at first. This is where the technology part came in. You see, when we arrived in Pittsburgh, it was going on 4:30 PM. The sun was getting low by the time we started off on the trail (The great Allegheny Passage… more on that in my next post) When the sun goes down, it sets in the west. We all learned that in elementary school. Did I remember that? No. We started off enthusiastically with the sun right in our eyes. So we were headed west correct? That’s not the way to get to Maryland though. Did I remember that the sun set in the west? Nope. We spent several long minutes with the GPS on my boyfriend’s phone before I asked a nearby pedestrian, once we realized that something was wrong with our route. Okay, once my boyfriend realized something was wrong. I think technology is definitely addling my brain.

I bet you are wondering about the padded pants now. Simple. After realizing how many miles we were going to be biking (145 or so) and then realizing how even a 20 mile bike ride feels, I got these padded pants for cyclists. Yeah, they definitely work, but after 56 miles, even padded pants, and 3 other layers don’t cut it in the comfort department. (Biking is never very comfortable anyway)

So just keep in mind, when attempting a long bike ride, the sun sets in the west, and several pairs of pants should be worn at once.

Spring Birds

This has not been a cold winter.  In fact, I recently heard that it was one of 4 warmest on record.  I think we ‘ve gotten about 3 inches of snow in total.  Be that as it may, I still dislike winter.  Since I am one of those people who get cold at 75 degrees, I spend most of winter trailing around in thick fleece and have a blanket on the couch at all times.  The other day as I left the house in the morning, I noticed the birds. Being so warm, we have already all seen the extra early blooming flowers, and that was to be expected with such a winter.  But there is something about hearing birdsong in the morning, that makes my spirits rise, no matter what temperature.    It’s a mental boost, putting me in mind of  warm sunny days, the smell of grass and flowers.  It always gives me extra energy too, although thinking about what I need to do quickly uses up the energy.  I don’t think the kids have noticed yet.  I called their attention to all of the lovely birds that were singing, but they looked at me with the kind of pity reserved for moms who have gone off the deep end.  Still being young, they actually like winter, and don’t even mind the cold, so they don’t quite see why I am so excited about spring.  With literally days left in the official winter season, I feel like a kid on Christmas.  One thing I have missed, and no, not the ice and snow, that extra appreciation that comes with a cold winter.  When we start seeing those blue skies and feel the actual warmth of the sun for the first time, it’s like no other feeling.  I appreciate all of those things this year as well, but just not quite as much.  It probably was colder in the beginning of March than all of February.   Now that it is half way through March,  it really is beginning to show signs of the spring season.   The birds certainly are putting their best effort into spring this year and my kids are finally noticing.  And that I do appreciate.