Crash. Crack. These were the first sounds I heard on my mid-Easter Week run down Mt. Baldy. The day before, a Spring storm had dumped half a foot of new snow on the mountain. As the clouds parted, the white San Gabriels gleamed in the sun, beckoning me upward for what were probably my last ski runs of the season. Once I reached the peak, the brilliant sunshine did its best to attack the newly formed ice and snow. Ice coated most tree branches. It wasleft by rain that froze after the air turned cold enough for snow.. I did my best to steer around the ice rocks on every trail. The day made me really appreciate how much downhill skiers depend on groomed trails. There were areas on my favorite runs where it was like skiing on billiard balls. I even got hit by a chunk of falling ice as a big as a baseball. Luckily it fell on my shoulder from a low hangin eave. When I hear the warning sounds next time, I'm skiing in my hardhat. Still, it was a glorious respite from a life of hard work largely spent sitting at a desk.
Although the woods were far from quiet, it was peaceful watching the tug of war between seasons as winter refused to die without a fight. A few hours on the slope restored my sense of equilibrium. I had spent the entire day before wrestling with a balky computer program. Software is wonderful when it does what it should. This did not. Yet its failure at the moment was of prime importance. Nothing else matter, not food, nor fatigue, but it did get the better of me. Time outside in the natural world puts everything in perspective. As I write this today, I'm refreshed and renewed, eager to tackle life's challenges again.
I have to admit that I had become tempted of late by too much Easter chocolate. I hadn't bitten the ears of a bunny rabbit in years when I had an odd reaction to that treat. Then I realized that this candy was primarily sugar, not chocolate, and that my insulin was kicking in hard, a good reason to limit my indulgence to the dark, rich, and deservedly expensive version of my favorite sweet.
I've staying fit, hiking, biking, and playing in an a three hour tennis round robin a couple of weeks ago. My weight is still down more than than forty pounds from my peak, although I'd like to lose more. My last blood work showed cholesterol at 173 without medication to control it with blood pressure at 120 / 80. A dermatological exam showed A-OK. I was cautioned after showing with a touch of sunburn, to use more sunblock. I had, but even SPF50 wasn't enough for 10,000 feet on a sunny day.
A day like yesterday reminds me of the importance of recreation, filling up the spirit with the good that life offers, so that one has the energy to handle the garbage.
Anti-Aging Diary c. 2010 Checkmate Pictures - Paul M. J. Suchecki, Editor