shoot-246While winter has largely contented itself to stay up in the mountains, I have been enjoying my monochrome month immensely. In retrospect, the light has been better than I expected, and perhaps this is contributing to the optimism I am feeling.

Our tour this summer had to be scratched, due to health reasons. I felt badly about it, but there was no other way. It turned out to be the right decision.

In the intervening time, I’ve accumulated enough Amtrak points to get the larger bedroom and ride across the country in style. Come the first of the year, I’ll make our reservations at various bed and breakfasts, and at least one lock house, across Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Virginia, Maryland, and on in to Georgetown. Then it will just be a matter of conditioning.

Steph has been running miles and miles, staying in shape. She’s running a marathon in May so she will be in exemplary shape for our ride in June. I’m going to have to step up my game and get on the trainer as much as I can. It’s hard to ride the trainer when it’s been as nice as it has been. I’ve been succumbing to my urges to just go walkabout instead. I’ll probably need to work up to taking a few runs in there myself. I gave up running in college, so I’m approaching my reintroduction to it with some hesitation. But needs must, and all that.

Looking at the maps, I seem to have already found the anomalous spot. There’s always one day of riding that is longer or shorter than the rest, with distance between a town or place to stop that’s off by a bit from the rest of them. There’s no short day in this ride, I think. Looks like one long one will cover that requirement. And the extra miles won’t kill us. It should be a great extension to an already great day.

When I’m not pouring over maps, calculating distances for daily rides, and grinning, hikes around town and to other places are the rule of the day.

shoot-245Underneath the thin sunshine of November, I’m enjoying exercising my legs with walkabouts and my eye with shooting roll after roll of black and white film. Sharpening body for the upcoming task, and sharpening mind and eye to capture it. When you cover ten miles or so on foot you find a great many things you would not have seen in a car, or even on a bike. Slowing down is its’ own reward. It turns out, there’s a large part of this city I’ve missed, even with living here for a while. It makes for a good exercise ground.

Weather be damned. I am happiest with sky above and road below. No hibernation this year. There’s too much to see and do, and too much to plan and prepare for.

A happy balance between looking forward to what is to come, and being in the moment.