January 8th, 2004

Bright blue skies are chilly

Rumor has it that where I came from is damn cold right now, too. Tonight, the forecast is for below zero (and that's fahrenheit). I think I have been a good sport about this move, but if it's going to get that cold, I'm going to stay indoors in the warm. Brrrr.

I headed east the day after T-day, and got in the following Monday. I have done the trip is one fewer day, but that was summertime. There were no overturned semis (one was a car-hauler, and I tried to see if it still had cars on it, but no such luck. Another blast hit me and I decided I'd better pay more attention to my driving). No compact snow and ice for several miles in the Oregon and Washington passes, just a May snowstorm, on the previous return trip. And even that snowstorm did not reduce the visibility as far as the one I went through near Rochester.

But with four new Blizzaks on a Subaru, it just did not matter. It turns out these brake just fine even on sheet ice. I know. The road at the end of my driveway out has a lot of sheet ice on it, from some temperature cycling a couple days ago after the last big snowfall. There's only so much plows, sand and salt can do.

I caught the cold that has been going around, and fretted about it more than I should have, because I had to fly to Seattle for the Winter Solstice, then back home to do standard Christmas festivities. Lots of dogs and children for opening presents on Christmas morning, traditional and noisy, but quite well behaved.

We bailed out of the almost-as-traditional movie outing the day after, in favor of the Albany rock gym, which has caves. Not bouldering caves, where no matter how hard you have been working on your upper body, you'll feel weak and pathetic. No, squirmy little tunnels behind the climbing walls, above the climbing walls, over and down behind the other climbing walls, and largely unlit, except for the occasional tiny room all in mirrors, or painted in shades of grey to disguise the exits. I had incredible bruises on my knees for three days after, but it was so much fun.

I have now been to five rock gyms, and done four belay tests. It's getting a little old. It'd be nice to go to the same gym twice, and not have to mess around at the beginning. On the other hand, it is a crash course in how the rules vary from gym to gym, and how that relates to the style of climbing engaged in. There's been some testosterone driven escalation in designing walls to practice climbing overhangs. It's hard to imagine anyone doing stuff like that out in the wind and weather, but I would not assert that no one is dumb enough to do it.

I haven't tracked down a martial arts studio yet. I have been going to the Y, as supplement to the climbing, when the weather is bad, and I have been snowshoeing a couple of times. If we get more snow, I'll be trying out the cross-country skis I got for Christmas, and I keep meaning to buy ice skates (which I'm sure I could use today if I had 'em).

When I'm too sore to do anything else, I sit around with a book. It's so nice to catch up on my reading.
  • Current Mood
    contemplative contemplative

Time Happily Wasted

There are any number of things I should be doing. I owe several people email. I have forms to fill out, and an appalling amount of research to do. Even sleep would be more productive. And yet here I am, fiddling with pictures, making thumbnails and generally feeling dissatisfied with technology. One of my most familiar states.

Today's outing to the Y was both successful (as in, I went, I spent 50 minutes on the treadmill, 15 of which I jogged, and the last few of which I spent going uphill fast enough to get my heart rate above 195) and uneventful. Someone had left a recent copy of Forbes in the women locker room, so I got to read the cover article, which was about growing marijuana, and how big a chunk of the Canadian economy that still-illegal industry constitutes.

I made a batch of brownies, which is a bit of a risk. Roland tends to look at food as something that one should systematically eliminate. I look at food as something than one should always have around in enough quantity to feed unexpected guests or other emergencies. The brownies are a temptation all by themselves, despite the whole wheat, which I have historically managed by storing them in the freezer and removing them one at a time for a little four o'clock cup of coffee and sweet (a habit picked up on last January's excursion). He has been able to let the fig bars sit in the cupboard for days at a time, so I am optimistic.

Tomorrow, despite the cold, I expect I'll be going down to Boston to see a show or shows, I have forgotten which ones. I know I will be wearing wool, because it is going to be even colder tomorrow night.