Welcoming 2011 ...

After a brief flourish of posts to finish off last year, I find myself making another slow start to 2011.  Life has been more wonderful than usual and I as lazy with my writing as has come to be expected.  A bit of unseasonal rain has interrupted my recently rediscovered joy of mountain biking but only briefly as the trails are quickly drying out.  Since getting the Ninja in June, the Trek has been sorely neglected.  With over 9700 km on the Ninja and nearly zero on the Trek over the same time period, I found myself compelled to hit the trail again under my own power, for a change.

I have been sticking a little closer to home, looking for and finding new but difficult trails in areas one would not wish to visit in the rain.  Compared to the speed and distances one covers on the Ninja, at first glance a ride on the Trek might seem too tame and limited.  However, I soon rediscovered the joys of slowing down and watching the world expand around me, in direct correlation to my pace of movement.  Rice paddies, hillside orchards, rubber plantations, forest trails overgrown and neglected, expansive views of the distant mountains, rivers and nearly perfect trail conditions (before the rain hit).  An occasional stop for a cool drink, and to drink in the silence and solitude of the moment, leaves me refreshed and eager to move at a brisker pace once again.

Cookie and the other dogs have also benefitted from our walks, now including going off trail and meandering through the fields on the way back from the dam.  Though things are not as green as before the increased traversable terrain more than compensates for the seasonal change in the way things look.  After a warm spell, the weather has gotten chilly once again and one awakens each morning, not knowing if there will be a clear view of the fields and mountains that surround us or if we will be shrouded in a thick soupy fog.

On a different subject the heady rush of an engaging social life this winter season, has got my wife wondering what it would be like to reside closer to town and thus closer to friends.  Last evening as we sat surrounded by our dogs, watching the sunset and seeking warmth from each other to fend off the evening chill, I pointed out that my choice would be to make the drive into town rather than give up any part of this pastoral setting.  She gave me one of those cute little annoyed looks and agreed that what we have is too good to give up, despite a few drawbacks.

I suppose it is, at least in part, due to a difference in age and experience as well as a difference in personality but I look for ways to adapt and perfect what we already have while she plays the ‘what if’ game with completely different scenarios.  Though I wish she could focus a little more on what she has over what else might be out there, I understand that much of what I love about her would not have developed without a bit of dissatisfaction with the status quo and a need to grow and experience new things.  So I continue my role of the ‘rock’ that forms the foundation of our relationship, while she is the ‘rock 'n' roll’ who stirs things up and keeps things interesting.

This year seems to hold even more promise than the last but only time will reveal whether any of us are able to make good on that promise and take advantage of the opportunities that come our way.