Saturday, July 31, 2010

Day Two Hundred Twelve: There goes Janky July

Holy Shit, there goes July, the worst month for art so far. I mean, I let things pass this month in lieu of floating the river or bike riding. And while I am fully on board with photography being an art, I hardly think most of the photos that I selected would be elevated to that level. But I do have to consider this question daily: what is art? The thought rolls through the alleys in my mind.

However, desperate times call for desperate measures. And in a year long project, some days are lesser days than others. And on the final Saturday in July, I had to ride my bike and listen to live music. The bike ride was awesome, but not long enough. As for the show, it was questionable to my ear as to whether that music rose to the level of art... Thank goodness it was free.

And thank goodness for Danger. I get to flirt with Danger and Danger doesn't mind. He just curls up on my lap and together we find the art in that.

Saturday, July 31: End of the Month should be celebrated. So ice cream cake will do the trick.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Day Two Hundred Eleven: Four wheels vs. Two

I know I have been going on and on about my love affair with my bike. It has been there as long as I can remember. My first bike was red and white with red grips and training wheels. I rode those training wheels into the ground. I remember pedaling along at top speed, braids blowing, hands gripping handlebars, all with wicked lean to first one creaky little wheel then turn and lean on the other one. I used them both as crutch and tool. Eventually the aluminum supports got bent and the rubber wheels wore down on the gravel roads I cruised on. 

Finally came the day my dad decided it was time for me to ride like a big girl, without training wheels. I could hardly wait, hurry up daddy. 

The front yard had a slope to it, providing a launching pad for me and the now two wheeled red bike. My dad gave me a shove and I careened across the yard, out on to the driveway, weeee "I am riding Daddy! Look!". I sailed on past the house, out the back way and just when I was going good I hit a stone and veered to the right and into the thistle patch growing on the side of the road. Luckily it was dense and I was little, I got jabbed a bit but my dad pulled me and my bike out of the mess. And off I went, my love affair in full bloom. 

And next it was the blue girls bike hand me down from my sister who never rode it. Then the red tax return money bike my mom bought me in ninth grade. Then the white Panasonic that I bought with dish washer wages to ride from coast to coast the summer after high school. In college I got a Peugeot bicycle and rode that around campus and the Palouse until I graduated and moved to San Diego. There, I got hit by a car and the settlement bought me a new Cannondale worthy of a few triathlons along the ocean. That did fine until I hit the mean streets of New York City and I bought a hybrid. I loved that bike and took it to Europe where it was stolen from the vestible of a pension in Grand Canaria. Once back in the states and Idaho, I bought a mountain bike, a Gary Fisher, so I could ride around Gisborne Mountain while I was a fire lookout. Since then I also picked up a new Cannondale road bike that goes like the wind.

Whew, that was awesome for me. How was it for you?

Friday, July 30: I vote two wheels.

Day Two Hundred Ten: The Thin Line

How much is too much, and when is it not enough. Too much sun, or not enough vitamin D. A nice cruise on the bike or a body that can't recover from the push. Right now I am a roasted glow of over exposure to the sun from my bike rides and a couple of float trips. I am feeling the smooth rhythm that comes from riding often and consistently. I am feeling good and fast and sassy. 

I stopped smoking cigarettes just over six weeks ago. I think I started getting faster right after that. Duh. It took a couple weeks to stop hacking up all the crap from my lungs. But that part seems to be over. I am certain it was quickened by the daily rides.  I can breath deeply without phantom chest pains. Ridiculous, this obvious outcome. I love to ride, how I stopped or slowed that in the past I don't know why. I do know that without the bike, I am less than myself. Odd but true. 

And so, I ride.  

And then some days I think that I ride because I am lazy. It is so much easier to roll than to walk. I can sit down, there is coasting of course. My bike can carry packages and park close to the door. I don't have to go to the gym, or to the gas station as often. I always have an excuse for my windblown 'do and my salty smell.  

And at the end of the day, when the bike is resting, the body is ingesting, then resting, it is good to have a friend nearby. Danger is my friends cat and he is just recovering from a near death experience I swear. He was all skinny and wobbly. But the cat doctor poked and prodded and he seems to be getting better now. His coat is shiny again, though his eyes are still weepy. Oh, Danger.

Thursday, July 29: I heard live music and rode 25 miles today. I am inspired. 

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Day Two Hundred Nine: Summer Rains

I am feeling the cold draft of my ambivalence blowing around again. I hate it when the wind shifts. Or I love it. I can't decide. But I don't care either. Not only do I have conflicting thoughts, I am insouciant as well.

Then again, everyday, I see instances of my own hypocrisy in action. When I am thoughtless in my reactions to things that I should have approached with more humility, more acceptance.  I need to be more flexible, supple, bendable to whatever the situation requires, looking for only the good. 

But then I say fuck all that and just get away. Cycling off into the sunset and away from whatever might ail me. Into the night and the stars.

Wednesday, July 28: pastel and pen on paper.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Day Two Hundred Eight: Times They Are A-Changin'

So, someone walked away with my phone for a time. We have the same one. No big deal right, sooner or later the mistake will be found and fixed... right?

Even in my sleep I contemplated my options. I keep wanting a better camera on my phone. Wait, are you hoping it is really lost and not just picked up by accident? No. I am sure he has it. It will be fine. But what if somehow it got damaged or lost along its journey... what is my upgrade possibility. Again? Really. 

It was nearly a disappointment to finally hear from him in the morning with the good news that he did indeed have my phone, sorry. So, I have to wait to find a better camera with a phone attached.

And so it goes. My muse-less state has me grasping at ideas like fireflies... just out of my reach. I still look skyward for help in times like these.

Tuesday, July 27: Hellbent on Stars in Acrylic paint, sharpie, pen and chalk. 18x24

Day Two Hundred Seven: In Your Face

Just when I think I am cruising along, happily distracted:  fate, the universe, god, dumb luck, coincidence or the Law of Attraction... something brings my fear, my emotional Achilles heel, my poignant passions to my face and drops them on me. I can't escape. I think I am over it, I think I forgot and have far too much else to do to even think about... And boom. It happens. Back where I started.

So I get vicious.

At least it feels that way to me. I cast my eyes away. I am distracted. I change the subject. I do a terrible job of being present when I really want to be away. No, I just need to smile and say nothing. That would really be the best of plans. Clear my mind, take a deep breath, and remember to love. Because the bottom line is, I do. 

Next time. Until then I want to go hide under a bridge.

Monday July 26: Face your Fears, Then run away.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Day Two Hundred Six: Familiar surroundings make me complacent

The same places day after day bring comfort to many people. Consistency is the key to their peace of mind. I on the other hand find my moods swing in the opposite direction from that. I get more and more uncomfortable when the tick-tock of passing time sounds the same day in and day out. When the time of day can be gleaned from the same activities occurring at that time. 

No, I thrive on variety, change, chance. 

Unknown possibilities abound at all times, it is just harder to see them through the fog of ordered days. Chaos is not exactly what I would choose, but a swirl of it passing by now and then blows the dust off my soul and reveals other paths to consider. 

So, I apologize for my erratic timing and strange choices in activities now and then. My appearance of insanity is sometimes the only thing that keeps me sane.

So, my consistency lies in my bike. It picks my friends and we ride.

Sunday, July 25: The bike chain ring print on my leg is what I want for a tattoo.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Day Two Hundred Five: Bikes build buddies

From here to the end of time, I will not have enough time to do all that I would like. I make art, and sometimes that process takes over and makes me. And sometimes that process takes over and stores it up for a later time.

Today was one of those.

Saturday, July 24: and then I was like......

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Day Two Hundred Four: I swear off you forever

Some times the effort pays off and some times it is a learning experience not likely to be repeated again if I can help it. Last night was a learning experience. I learned that not everyone is ready to be loved. Especially me.
So I will just ride.

Friday, July 23: And that was that.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Day Two Hundred Three: I Am Flirting with Danger

Not that my activities are unusual, at least for me, but tonight, Danger flirts with me. Danger the perpetually small and young male cat that I love. He represents all that I look for in the world. Unassuming, claws but no bite, interest but no follow through. Suites well my bait with no hook, my gander with no vision, my wistful with little forethought.

Oh Me, you should think before you type.

Thursday, July 22: some strange shit I caught with my camera....

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Day Two Hundred Two: Exhaustion Slows Progress

A bike ride in the early part of the morning sets me up for a fantastic rest of the day. However, if I am not careful, a late night will negate an early morning.

But I would rather ride in the rain in the dark than sit in a cubicle so I will take anytime or circumstance that presents itself. And smile.

Wednesday, July 21: sharpie on paper

Day Two Hundred One: Wow, what to fucking say

the normal work day happened. Then came the adventure... unbidden and unexpected. 

I had to deliver some art to a new venue. Seemed to be the usual stuff. except for this: they took all my art and... hung it for me. It felt like a big girl art show.  

I had a friend meet me there, the usual thing, a friend to stand around whilst  I stress out about where stuff goes.

No, this was different, the staff was the best, even though I was what I thought was a stranger awaiting the girl who arranged the show. Instead, I got a great beer out of the deal with the girl saying, "I know you, you're that smiley artist". Yes, yes I am.

While I waited for my friend (perpetually late) and enjoyed the beverage, my art was hung. While I chatted with my friend, several people approached me with the inquiry if I was the artist. Yes.. holy shit, I am.

I asked and now I get... I love me.

Tuesday, July 20: some other stuff happened after that.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Day Two Hundred: Time to Shoot Off a Sparkler

It was a nearly perfect day. I say nearly because I got passed on the bike ride today. Burn. I just need to ride faster. 

And I managed to pass a number of people today. However, the fun part was that I wore a skirt, and a frilly shirt. In short, I was dressed for work. With bike shorts under the skirt. 

I was cycle chic, with a surprising kick. I need a vase of flowers on my handlebars and I would be so styling.

Until then, I had a blast. And I made you this:

Monday, July 19: acrylic, pastel, pen on paper, 18x24

Day One Hundred Ninety Nine: A Good Day

A good weekend always has the best of everything restful, fun and full of good conversation and good friends. And this town is a good place for all that....

Sunday, July 18: photo

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Day One Hundred Ninety Eight: Water and Rubber

Makes for a great float trip.

Saturday, July 17: photo

Day One Hundred Ninety Seven: The Bike Hole

Sometimes I get on my bike and the time disappears and I look up to find that the day has changed to the next, the night has considerably brightened, and I am off to find the next adventure. Saturday will bring floating on my raft on the lazy river with the fam. Summer rocks.

Which also reminds me, my pal Summer has her grand opening today. Her boutique is so freaking cute. I need to stop by. And there is a street fair there today as well. Summer rocks.

Hopefully there will be more bike riding today.

On to the event horizon:

Friday, July 16: fuzzy photo

I want to thank all my pals for being my pals. I have many stories to tell and I want to apologize now for making them funnier and totally from my warped vision.
That said, let the games begin.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Day One Hundred Ninety Six: Sometimes not enough is more than enough.

Like now

Thursday, July 15: Sharpie on watercolor paper: 

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Day One Hundred Ninety Five: How long do smells last?

This morning I was doing some cleaning outside. There was a garbage can that needed to be emptied. However it had been outside for a while, rain had invaded. The tilt to the side had the most rancid water begin to pour out. The smell is as close as I can tell, rotten chickens and chicken coop smell. I immediately lost my egg and toast from breakfast. Once I was voided and could lose no more, I completed the task. The mess was dumped onto the trailer to the dump. 
Okay, back to other concerns... Except that nasty smell...

I took the hose out and washed out the can, hosed down the ground where the water dumped. I went and washed my hands. Then took a shower and changed all my clothing. Still the smell persisted. I assumed that it must have gotten on my shoes, removed them, washed them in the sink and set them to dry. Still the smell. I smelled it all day, at work, in my car, on my hands. Repeated washings did nothing, lotion did nothing.

I am supposing my nasal passage is scarred and scared right now. It can't forget.  
Sigh, I am sure that its a metaphor for something... I refuse to contemplate. 

Wednesday, July 14: pastel, acrylic, paper, 18"x24"

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Day One Hundred Ninety Four: Put Me In My Place

Yeah, where is that really? 

Just don't let me take over. I eschew control over anyone. 

Let me create, in a beautiful space with people to inspire and love me wandering by. Oh, and some of my beautiful boys to play me some music. And my wonderful friends that love to cook, please show me all your secrets. My growing families: come play, let's build a fort and conquer the yard. And especially you my verbose and cock sure friends, I love to hear your thoughts. Yes, I love all of you whose vortex I stumble through. And those who are  undiscovered or unexplored, I adore you too. Let's play, let's love, let's make art, let's smile and laugh and be happy. Right Now.

Tuesday, July 13: Acrylic and pastel chalk and sharpie on paper, 18x24"

Encouragement comes from good places, new places, interesting places, sexy places, reliable places, funny places, challenging places. Thanks guys.

And if you where curious, detail:

Monday, July 12, 2010

Day One Hundred Ninety Three: Oh Jeez

Again. I question myself. How do I get back into the flow. The quiet completely non-judgmental brain. That is my daily prayer. Peace. In my own head.

Monday, July 12:  Sharpie on Paper, 9"x12"

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Day One hundred Ninety Two: New Moon

My body and the moon have the same rhythm. We go dark, peak, and flow on a wave of celestial energy.As long as I have the fore thought to look up and remain aware, the wave is an exciting ride. Everyone can feel the pulse.

I know Luna, I get all mushy when we collide.

Earlier today I took a float on the river, a beautiful summer adventure. Well, not so much adventure as a trusted thrill; a couple of unexpected rocks under the cover of waves to leave a mark on my hull, blessed relief from summer sun. It was faster water than I remember, there was no party crew, we floated. Happily, quickly and soon we finished.

And there I was... early in the day really, 2. On other trips, 2pm was usually when we all finally got to the start, te down stream car stashed, the final raft puffed. A final check of the cooler, the keys, the slather of sunscreen and finally we go.

So. Not yet burnt, not finished, no expected anywhere.

Ah. Find a friend that will ride a bike. Yes. And it was everything I hoped for and more.

Sunday, July 11: flow and ebb and sharpie.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Day One Hundred Ninety One: Solitude

I enjoy my time alone, most of the time. I enjoy other people, most of the time.

Saturday, July 10: unthinkable and paper.

Day One Hundred Ninety: I apologize

So, I was riding my bike with a friend a while ago and we had the most amazing time. Rather, during the duration, there was really no time. I mean, it was give and take, and then mostly only now. It was good. And I love the reaction of the friends when we meet. I smile, I joke. Hopefully I remember. Sometimes i forget.

So, now here I am wondering what I have to offer that is artistic. 

Shall I do something strange,,,, er.. or shall I make something now. 

The issues with this blog  and posting a new piece a day is turning out completely different than I ever thought.

I thought it was always, daily, going to be about the art. and it is. But, six months in... I get to question what art is, what my real contribution is to that and why I care. Why I pursue... what do I hope to gain, to say.

That has nothing to do with the making of the art. But, that is why I am on the path, to challenge myself about what that means, what I mean, what Art means.

So I hang out, meet people, try things. 

Some amusicment is amazing. Some artists challenge my ideas. Some bore me. All of those are amazing. I like to be affected at all.

I am having fun, but still I like to ask questions, to hear answers.  An yet, there you are, the yin to my yang. the dot to my exclamation, the knee to my sigh. And you thwart me. Deny me. You experiment. I appreciate. And it's nice. But here I wonder where that went, that amazing place where finally you challenged me. And I engaged, I listened, I peered, I gleened, I was awake.

Have I listened too long, looked too deep. And what usually happens... you disappeared. I love that you stayed long enough for me to engage. It was good for me. I appreciate your predictability. I needed to go too. I thought too much.

I love watching. It is so good. a blur at best.

Friday, July 9: more than last time of the nonsense and stuff.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Day One Hundred Eighty Nine: Constellation, consolation

Wandering across the lawn a glance skyward showed the most lovely sky. While not quite a new moon, the dark prairie sky was glittering with contents of the Milky Way. Immediately several obvious constellations are identified. I search my head for the names, dredging from the ancient reaches of that fold in my brain that holds my college astronomy class. Ah, good times.

Thursday, July 8: stuff and nonsense.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Day One Hundred Eighty Eight: Nagging

That voice in my head that tells me what needs be done: it's a nag.

I will get to it, just be quiet. You aren't helping and you know how I am about being pushed. I run in the opposite direction, or thwart. If you just let me be, stop talking about what will happen if... it will be done and easily. So enjoy the journey and in the words of every mother from the beginning of time: "If you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all."  Now let me enjoy some silence in my head. Allow some space for peace. When peace comes everything falls into place. I swear. Now just go enjoy the offerings of Pandora, let some paint flow, take deep breaths, and enjoy the now as only the peaceful can. Thanks. You will be fine and there is plenty of time to talk, later.

Let me just play, flow, enjoy, float, dream, smile, create...

Wednesday, July 7: essence of freedom

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Day One Hundred Eighty Seven: A simple story of me

Oh my, I gave this story as a talk at Toastmasters a month or so ago. I thought it might give you some idea of me. Enjoy, hiss or nothing. I just is:

Surveying one’s life is a daunting task. I traveled into a few mind alleys in the last couple days trying to figure out what might explain my path better than “What was I thinking?” and have yet to come up with anything rational except this: all my travel, tribulations and adventures contributed to my becoming an Artist.

And that, today, is how I define my driving force.

After 5 states in my first 5 years, we settled in Idaho. Apparently my dad was restless too. Growing up in Sandpoint, ID I was an avid reader. A taste for adventure was born in those pages, along with the notion that anywhere was more exciting and interesting than Sandpoint. What was I thinking?

The day after high school graduation began my first real adventure. I left on a coast to coast bicycle trip. My mom tells of her sinking feelings as my family left me, at 17, first time away from home, beside the road in Oregon with my bike. What am I thinking? She lamented to herself.

82 days of pedaling, from Oregon to Virginia, 13 flat tires, 20 lost pounds, 10 states  and two oceans later, I grew from dumb kid to confident young adult with an idea that the world has plenty to see and beauty comes in a myriad of forms.

College added knowledge of Economics, computers, ceramics, boys, beer, weed and sex. And after five years and five majors, I graduated with a degree in finance and got married. What was I thinking?

We moved to San Diego where I learned the beauty and physics of waves; that running in sand makes you determined, and bicycling on the boardwalk requires a beverage holder on your handlebars.

Lest anyone be fooled, I had no real plans to settle down and true enough in a couple years, idyllic beach life began to lack the culture I thought I needed and off to NYC we went.

I was learning photography by then and taking photos was helping me learn to see. 

But NYC gave me an overload of culture, art, metropolitan sensibilities and ample opportunities for emotional growth. I was able to travel to London and Scotland and Costa Rica and Greece, I learned to sail, I learned to smoke, I became a member at MOMA the Whitney and the Met. I saw Pavorotti in the Park, I saw BB KING at the Beacon, I worked 80 hour weeks, got high blood pressure, got mugged. I lost my nephew to suicide, my father to heart attack and my husband to apathy.

And I started to paint. (What was I thinking?)

And my restlessness festered.

My inner artist was still gathering material for future expression.

So, I gave up my rent controlled apartment and I quit my well-paid NYC job (What was I thinking?). I took my last bonus, my new boyfriend, my travel kit of art supplies and set off to see Europe and become Continental.

For nearly a year we traveled on a whim, hit every Picasso exhibit we could find, the Van Gogh museum, Notre Dame and St. Marks. We saw a chapel made by monks out of bones they robbed from graves; we took a tour deep in the champagne caves in France; because of the rains that knocked out train trestles, we toured Morocco in a taxi with another American and two Brazilian girls we met on the boat. We ate brownies from a girl on roller blades in Amsterdam. What where we thinking?

And even then, complete freedom becomes routine. And the dwindling money threatened an orderly transition back. So we went back to the states, gathered funds, and settled in San Francisco.

I learned that one out every 11 people there make their living in art, or related activities. All the while I am slowly developing my craft; more of a hobby at first, really. But the idea grew. And the supplies grew. And the canvases grew. And I started to find my own voice.

Finally we came back to Spokane and family. And he went his way to become a farmer and I plunged myself deeper into the process of making art.

I started showing. Scared witless for the first couple shows; I was nervous as heck to talk to the sweet faced college kid handing out wall space in a bar. What am I thinking? And then I soon had the entire venue. And I met more people.

I have done a number of things here to keep body afloat, but all things continue to lead back to the art and what might inspire me.  And rash decisions have been made. Consequences suffered. What was I thinking? Yet music and musicians, art and artists are around often and my circle luckily includes chefs, writers and carpenters and boys to fix my car.

And the art continues to evolve. Just faster now.

And due to Facebook and my daily art blog post and friends and my relentless pursuit of the process, the art is getting more attention.

And my definition of myself as an artist, that grows, That’s what I was thinking.

So there you have it, Me. 

Tuesday, July 6: The abridged tale of me.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Day One Hundred Eighty Six: The Luxury of Dreams

The other day I was reading posts on Facebook and my friend Bradley posted a recipe for a wonderful life:

"Live by the water. Bike to work. Work with your friends. Do what you love."

I can't think of anything to add. I would be living near the ocean, though truthfully nearly any body of water gives me a thrill, including streams. Biking to the studio would be next, though the best is to live at the studio or have the studio at home... prepared at all times so the biking is to everywhere else.... Making art and music all day would fulfill loves and passions for me. While I can make visual stuff, some friends can do the music part *Play for me boys, what have you got today?*. All my bases covered. 

And as friends wander through and music and art get made, life is but a dream.... merrily, merrily... Let's bike to the beach!

Monday, July 5: Acrylic paint, Sharpie, pen on paper, 18x24

Day One Hundred Eighty Five: Pink

Weekends incite me. I need that all the time.

Sunday, July 4: acrylic paint on canvas

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Day One Hundred Eighty Four: Other Trucker.

In the name of all that is artistic I need to say what I mean, mean what I say, 100%. In the midst of all that is me, I forget to remember what came before. I love the constant change, the constant and renewed influences that affect my work, my day, my thought and my direction. 


I mean, I guess, I like my friends and muses and influences. No matter what I might say.

Saturday, July 3: Sharpie on Rough Cut. 

Friday, July 2, 2010

Day One Hundred Eighty Three: I Will Return

After I ride my bike and play with friends

Friday, July 2: acrylic paint on canvas

Day One Hundred Eighty Two: Me and My Bike Go Play.

I had a great ride this morning. I love to feel smooth, fast, confident that the bike knows my need.

 I have been jumping off the pavement onto the dirt trail  whenever I feel it or find it. I love the different way my body gets to play. The path is narrower, hazards of various sizes loom, control is paramount. Animal instincts seep out, I crouch, practically sniffing the air, feeling the edge of the speed I need to hold. I banish thoughts of torn trousers and skinned palms sure to occur if I head on the bolder mid-path ahead. Branches hang so low from overgrown trees that I need to duck nearly below my handlebars. Or fall off the hill the trail is perched precariously on the edge of. My smile is broad but tight as I maneuver. I will master you.

Then comes a downhill rush, the bump up to pavement and civility reigns, I can straighten my scarf, unclench.

The spring flowers are still out in abundance, the cornflowers, yarrow, mustard... I think of impressionists and small dabs of color, the sky is dazzling in blues and puffy to dense clouds. The river rush is full still, green with brush and trees clinging to the drown shore in its wake.

And on I roll. My body is finding the perfect rhythm for the ride today, Steady, a push that burns the thighs but is comfortable.  My mood moves towards giddy as the first bike is passed. On slightly rolling hills, the wind blowing my hair back; a glisten forms as exertion finds its way to the surface of my skin.

From the opposite direction comes a really fast one: handsome, dark, muscular, and tall at that. Dressed in all the gear- jersey, shorts, shoes, all in yellow and red. I would have loved to turn and give chase, just for the thrill, except he was too fast. Clearly. I took note, tossed a smile and filed that as inspiration as the smile was returned. Soon my pretty, soon.

Round the next bend, up ahead, three teenage boys have come from a side road onto my path. The need to stalk them, pass them increases my pace. My breathing still steady, deeper, I begin to narrow the gap. Clearly the group has a "Stand By Me" hierarchy and the meander is clear as they decide what to do. But their pace is increasing.

At this point I hang back a touch holding their pace, gaining my full breath. If I increase to a passing pace, how much faster can I hold for how long. I hate to pass only to find the pace too quick and they retake me on the next bend.

The sun is warm, not hot. I am feeling good, if not hot! I took the bait and off I went. We were a fifty or so yards apart. I was gaining ground, even though it took some yardage. Just when I was within a strike, 50 feet or so, all three veered to the right, off the pavement and down a very steep trail towards the river.

The first down was fearless, fast, full speed. The second, bigger, took a second before the plunge, but the hesitation resulted is a slight skid as he tried to control his fear. Third stopped at the top completely arrested for seconds as he then eased off the road and slowly crept down the steepness and then off to the trail.

I did not give chase, though it occurred to me, rather briefly. I could see them down there. The first, a wiry kid with a strawberry complexion, was still moving fast. as the others leveled off and took up the chase. I was still on the road and pushed it hard. I had seen the path before from above but had just now discovered its access point. Just as I rounded the bend that the dirt trail cuts across, he was jumping up from the trail onto the pavement. A sideways slide to stop showed a huge grin, a deep gulp of air and a look back to see the stragglers still far off.

"Good job son" is all I can muster and as his grin increases, a labored "Thanks" gasps out. I file that grin away also as inspiration.

Off I roll to my destination, faster. I will take that trail too. I swear.

Thursday, July 1: ramblings.