Saturday, November 29, 2008

pelicans, pavement, and persimmons

There aren't enough 4-day weekends on the calendar.

This year, our chosen family of friends was scattered for the Thanksgiving holiday (and our actual families thousands of miles away). We thought about skipping it altogether, but eventually chose to go out to dinner. Parts of the special Thanksgiving menu were fabulous; other parts were "eh". It was, however, a nice ending to a lazy Thanksgiving which included sleeping in, a good walk, and longish phone conversations with family. (This year, however, they fortunately didn't itemize every dish on the table, like my father did one year while I was in college and stuck in the dorms for Thanksgiving. It wasn't a kindness.)

Then there was the bike ride which beat me in to submission. Stupid hills. But I didn't stop, and I consider that a minor victory.

Today though... today was one of those days where you just inhale the sweetness. We drove up the coast for lunch: fresh crab sandwiches and clam chowder by the marina, with a cool breeze and warm sunshine. The whole day had that low, slanting autumn light that makes everything look like you're in a movie, and it was a beautiful drive. Lunch was followed by a walk along the coast, watching pelicans skim the frothy surf. There was fog coming in; combined with the slanting sun it made everything look quite dramatic. El Bandito and I stopped and stared at the hawks hunting in the haze.

We got home late afternoon, and after some lazing about, I cleaned the fridge and headed out for a pre-dinner run.

Now I've got a full stomach, there's cranberry-persimmon bread baking in the oven, and I've an entire additional weekend day to enjoy tomorrow.

Meanwhile, in the tradition of the season, some things I'm thankful for:
  • El Bandito. A decade of marriage has only improved things. I'm thankful every day to have such a wonderful partner, who encourages me, who makes me giggle, who supports me in so many ways. I lucked out.
  • Family and friends. I'm something of an introvert, but I've got fabulous friends. and family that I count as friends. Not everyone feels the same.
  • Trapeze.
  • Furry felines, and people who let me play with their dogs
  • Playtime.
  • Ice cream. Who thought of that? Ditto wine.

Sunday, November 23, 2008


part of the blessing/curse of being a redhead is bruising easily.

I counted seven bruises on my legs this morning.
at least 3 of them are from trying new things on the trapeze -- and it feels good to be trying *new* things again.

2 are from running into things when locking up my bike on days I commute by bike (most).

the others are a mystery.

I don't really mind. El Bandito thinks bruises are attractive -- not the multishades of hematoma, but the fact that they represent a willingness to attempt things. (we'll ignore the clutz factor).

I've been stepping up the job hunt, so I feel a little bruised mentally. It's hard work trying to decide what I want to do. Stepping outside my comfort zone athletically is enough of a challenge; doing so professionally is important but equally terrifying. And convincing other people that I'm qualified to do so? Scary stuff.

In other notes, Thanksgiving is approaching. We seem to be planning on ignoring the holiday. Our quirky oven is too small to properly roast a turkey, and our usual assemblage of friends all have assorted unpredictable plans this year. So, there will be a bike ride -- we'll keep that tradition (or substitute a long rambling walk). But I'm still grateful. Giving thanks and appreciating friends and family doesn't need to be limited to one specified holiday. I've got a good life, bruises and all.

Monday, November 10, 2008

hazy lazy adventure

Scene: living room, NYT magazine crossword on lap
time: early afternoon, a partly sunny Sunday

El Bandito: So, would you like to go for a walk?

You must now momentarily close your eyes and imagine a border collie offered that option. Spinning around in cirlces by the front door wondering what's taking the silly man so long.

My shoes were on in less time than it took to type this sentence.

Through the park, along with the skaters and cyclists and runners out enjoying their weekend.
By one of the LBS to grab a replacement inner tube.
Up a big hill for the view. Down through random streets and stairways.

I kept waiting for that jingling sound of change in the pocket that signals El Bandito's ready to grab a bus back towards home... and not hearing it.

next stop: ice cream

and then walk continued, through the gritty sunny district and past the industrial warehouses. over another hill. A stop for coffee.

and suddenly we were veering into a large sporting goods and outdoor store; now my bike wears a shiny silver bell I can used to alert folks I'm passing in the crowded park.

continuing towards the waterfront -- another detour, for a late-afternoon beer at the pub.

strolling along the waterfront, watching the tourists and residents alike enjoying the hints of sunset and oncoming twilight.

we topped the afternoon off with perfect public transit timing.

it was like my day was sprinkled with magic pixie dust. a series of small, random adventures connected by the path of my feet.

8.3 miles of urban exploration, initiated by one random query. A great way to spend a lazy Sunday.