Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Desert Writings: 1

The azure sky burns brightly under the falling October sun. Maroon, yellow,salmon, and white cliffs rise in majestic contrast to the green of the juniper tree and the bright blue sky. A light chilly breeze whispers in the desert fall. I feel something cold and wet touch my leg. There is my golden desert loving dog, wagging his tail in delight and smiling his big doggy grin up at me. How happy he is to be out here in the clean crisp air, to roam freely without the interference of other humans, traffic, or city life. Out here you can find what true freedom is all about. If you so desire you can also experience pure solitude. Solitude which, in today's time of suburban sprawls, traffic congestion, strip malls, and high rises is so hard to come by. But out here in the vastness that is the San Rafael Swell, it can be found. Quiet spots can be found among the giant plateaus or the deep slot canyons. Let your heart lead the way and you will find peace out here. Once upon a time, not really so long ago, I would have sought this peace with chemicals. Alcohol, cigarettes, pot, acid, ecstasy, meth, yes even with heroine. Those were fun and I did escape, but that escape was momentary. Then reality would set in with a vengance. The sick strung out feeling, work to do, bills to pay (with less money than I started with). Nothing in life is free. One day I snapped out of it and resdiscovered nature. One may argue that my escapes to nature to find peace are but momentary as well. I won't deny that point. However, the effect of being in nature, and especially the pristine solitude of the desert, is a lifelong one. The spiritual peace of being so intimate with God's creations cannot be taken away. They may take everything from you, but they cannot take away the memories and feelings you keep with you forever, that come from this starkly beautiful land.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Well, it's been awhile since I've written. A lot has happened. What you may ask (or more likely not, since no one reads this blog), but in case you are reading and wonder what... Life... Life has happened. It never ceases to amaze me that it happens, but it does. One day you're just walking along and WHAM life hits you, and you realize, damn, I forgot about this. Ha ha, but really, despite everything, setbacks, injuries, and yes, even some heartbreak, it seems life is just getting better and better. I'm cool with life happening if it keeps getting better. I like that. I hate the bullshit in life, but I guess that's all a part of it.

So, last time I wrote, Victoria and I were trying to kill ourselves on road bikes at night in the dark, me in a boot from my Achilles rupture, her just out of neck surgery. Well, Victoria is now well on her way to becoming Special Agent Victoria. (Last names withheld to protect the not so innocent.) Yes, she's at the FBI Academy learning to fight dudes, shoot guns, and overall kick more ass than she already does. I hope to visit her in N.M. (her first post) after she gets there.

I went on a mountain bike ride shortly after that with my boot on, up to Dog Lake. It was so much fun getting out and riding, even though I was still super gimp. I made it all the way up to the lake too. Not much to brag about healthy, but 3.5 miles within a month of getting off crutches, in a big black boot on one leg, in the mountains, is hard. Coming down was a riot! I'm so lucky I didn't freaking crash. My boot kept flying off my pedal, it was a bit frightening, but super fun!
Sometime later, school started. Yes, that's right, 33 year old girl said school started. I figured it's about time I get my degree. I'm currently at SLCC to get my associates in Environmental Geology, then it will mostly likely be off to the U of U to get my bachelors then masters in Geology. And I have a 4.0! I hope I still have that 4.0 at the end of my 2nd semester. Note to self: Do not take summer classes while working full time. No really, do not do it again.

Moving along, I rode Slickrock for my first time ever this past spring, with Jake, my desert rat camping buddy. (I need to get pics of all this stuff up.) I rode it as a gimp, but a bootless gimp. Rode it about the time I still couldn't stand up on a bike due to a really weak leg. You would think that I would consider this before riding Slickrock, but this is me after all. I don't believe that I've ever been known for easing into anything, or not doing something because I MIGHT not be able to do it. So.... I went and did it. I was sore and my Achilles/ankle/foot were swollen after, but who cares. I did it as a gimp! I started out sketchy, and walked some first parts, but as I realized that I was riding OK, I quit being a wuss and started riding again. Next day, we rode the Klondike Bluffs, which was really fun, then came back home. I love my 2 day trips to the desert with Jake. Wish he'd get his ass back from Korea.

So about that jumping in and doing stuff, even if I probably shouldn't...I'm on my way to being fully recovered from the Achilles injury...and I decided to take a rock climbing class this semester. Well, climbing, and near the top of a problem, I slipped off my 2nd to last hold of the problem and fell. No big deal right? I have lots of pads to land on. Wrong, (well the pads are still there) but apparently, they don't help if you're dumb and stick your arm out to catch yourself. I landed fine, but then as I collapsed onto the mats, my hand hit, arm locked, then "pop" and it started throbbing. I grabbed it and said "I broke my arm". Ta da! Stacy thinks she's a rock climber then freaking goes and falls. Well, I did basically break it. Put a 3.5mm dent in my humerus, broke of a 2 mm piece of cartilage, and am still recovering from that. Still waiting to see if I have to have my elbow scoped to remove the cartilage that is driving me crazy. Meanwhile, I'm back to climbing, cuz what's a little dent in my bone, except something that hurts all the time? Ha ha!

The past year I've had 2 breakups, 2 injuries, 2 semesters in school, 2 4.0 semesters in school (I believe), and last but not least, freaking got into another relationship. Am I crazy? Wait! Don't answer that! I know I am! But whatever. If it feels right, go for it right? Right! Hopefully he can put up with me for awhile, until I get over being scared of this thing called a relationship. Why do boys come into our lives when we least want them? I was happy single, and had sworn off relationships until I was done with school. 4+ years is enough time to get over being afraid of being hurt I figured. But NO, Little Danny Moore has to come back into my life after 14 years and make me like him. Ok, well, he didn't make me, it just happened. But it's good. All is good! Life is good! I'm happy! Really truly happy for once! I think I've realized that I'm happiest when I'm doing what I love, working at bettering myself, and living an awesome life! And now there's someone to share it with for the time being and maybe longer if we get lucky. SWEET!

So life happened. And life happened for the better! And I hope it keeps going this way! Meanwhile, hurt arm and all, look for me on my bike or on the rock! And say hi! I will be hitting it hard in the 2 weeks between semesters! I will have to post another blog of above mentioned adventure photos.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Guns, Shoot, Destroy

So, I've decided I enjoy destroying things from time to time. I have an aggressive streak in me (Note: I didn't say mean, although I have one of those too...) and from time to time feel the need to destroy things.

I have been feeling the urge to destroy for a couple of weeks, so I enlisted my cute friend Sage "The Redneck" to help me in my endeavor to destroy something.

Sage is a self proclaimed redneck. Although, other than being an avid hunter and fisher and into rock crawling in his truck, he has no redneck tendencies. I have acquaintances that are truly redneck. Sage is too nice, well mannered, and doesn't partake in alcohol nor tobacco consumption. So by that alone, he cannot be a true redneck.

So up to the East Canyon area to a gun range we headed. Me chomping at the bit to get shooting guns. (Like the redneck metaphors?) I just saw those big cases with guns in them, and I was super excited. I get to go play with guns. Shoot, destroy! Heh heh heh heh. (My best Beavis impersonation.)

Sage showed me how to use his guns, going for the 22 caliber one first, as it doesn't kick really at all, and would be easier to get a feel for. I really didn't do too shabby.

On a side note, it seems to be apparent from these pictures, that when I'm concentrating, I have to have my mouth open or be pulling a face. I'm trying to get the gun aimed, and it's really hard to see with the sun glaring in my eyes as it sets.

Sage then decided that I'm a big girl, as I actually hit the target with the smaller caliber gun, and that I was ready to move on to the 30 caliber rifle. That was a fun gun to shoot! It made a loud bang and it kicked. Even being the one shooting, when it went off, I jumped. I'm amazed with how much the gun kicked, that I even hit the target.

I think I was cackling like a crazy woman after shooting that gun. Shooting guns really got the endorphins going. I was so happy the rest of the night and into the next day after shooting those guns.

Who knew playing with guns was so much fun? Oh, I guess children do, since parents are supposed to keep their guns away from their children, but I didn't grow up with guns, so I never learned how fun they are to play with. I want to play with guns more!

Oh, and did I mention I hit the target? Well, I did. Every time!

Mine is on the left, Sage's is on the right. Had that one stray bullet to the left hit closer to the center, I would have done as well as Sage. And this was my FIRST time! Just goes to show "anything you can do I can do better, I can do anything better than you..."

Next time, I want the target to be rigged to explosives. That would be AWESOME! Kaboom Days here I come!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Gimps on bicycles

Yesterday I went on my longest ride since I had my surgery on my Achilles tendon. I had surgery August 28, 2008, and just got off crutches a week ago. Since then, I've gone on about 5 bike rides on my commuter bike around the city. I've put a flat pedal on the left, and kept my Egg Beater pedal on the right, so I have some sort of power, however little, when I ride. I have to get up hills somehow, I live in SLC .

So I hit up my friend and fellow gimp, Victoria to ride with me. She just had neck surgery 3 weeks ago. She was supposed to wear her neck brace, so we could really look like fools. I in my boot and her in her brace. She conveniently "forgot".

So I jumped on my road bike (first time on the road bike since surgery) and met up with Victoria at her place and headed for the Great Salt Air, one of the few flat rides around these parts. The ride is roughly a 45 to 50 mile round trip ride. We agreed before hand, as we are both gimps, that we would go as far as we could and not be ashamed to turn around if we were hurting.

Turns out hurting wasn't the problem. Daylight and airport security gates getting locked at 7 pm were our concerns. We had to turn around about 3/4 of the way there due to the aforementioned concerns. It was a beautiful warm fall evening. A perfect evening for a ride.

We passed only 2 riders total out there last night, and set a record for number of gnats swallowed in a single ride. It was dusk as we turned around, so we tried to hurry back as I didn't have any lights with me. (Fortunately Victoria brought hers.) We got back to the bike path and made it through the first security gate. By the time we got to the next security gate, they were locked.

Let me digress for a moment. There is a bike path that goes right by the Salt Lake International Airport. In fact it's so close, you're riding between runway lights on part of the path. Planes come in over your head only about 50 feet above you or so. It's so fun to get off the bike, lay on your back, and watch the planes fly overhead so close you feel you can touch them. So you are riding in a "secured" area. I guess they don't think cyclists are going to be carrying bazookas to blow planes up with. There are 5 gates you have to go through along this path. Then you're back out on the main roads again.

So back to where I left off... Victoria and I made it through the first gate, and got to the 2nd one, and it was locked. We lucked out big time. We were in one of 2 areas that we could get out of the secured area not using the gates. Where we happened to be was right next to the on ramp to I-80 leaving the airport.

Victoria the gimp and Stacy the gimp did what we had to do, we hopped the concrete barrier and rode onto the on ramp with all the traffic in the dark and merged, narrowly avoiding getting hit. We immediately got off the North Temple exit and continued on our merry way home in the dark.

By the time we both got home, we had probably ridden about 30 miles total. Not bad for 2 people that just recently had surgeries! We're going to try the same ride again this week, but leave earlier so we have enough daylight to get to the Great Salt Air and back. Oh, and so we can avoid being stuck in airport secured areas after the gates lock.

Monday, October 20, 2008


(Picture: Me trying to surf for my first time.) There is a first time for everything. Your first birthday, your first holidays, your first snowflake on your tongue, your first mud pie, your first trip to the mountains, beach, desert, etc. Your first time on a bike, your first time riding your bike without your mom/dad and training wheels, your first time on skis/snowboard, your first lift ride up that snowy mountain. You get my drift.

Firsts are always scary yet exhilarating. Not sure that first blogs on an actual blogging site are exhilarating, but it's kind of scary. I've written a few blogs on MySpace, and that's it. I write in my journal sometimes. But actual blogging for the sake of blogging I've never done. I mean, who wants to actually read what I have to write?

I have a friend that told me I should start jotting down my life stories and memories before I forget and maybe someday write a book. I think he's smoking crack, he says he's serious. We get together for coffee at random coffee shops and talk and talk and talk, and drink some coffee too. Sometimes he buys, sometimes I buy.

But I digress. He says I have some great stories and could potentially have an entertaining book. Moi? I'm not quite so sure, but he sure finds my life entertaining. So I've considered it. Maybe this blog is a jumping off point, a place to see if anyone really is interested in reading what I have to write.

I don't know. Sometimes I think I'm a decent writer, other times, not so much. I seem to only write decently well when the mood strikes me. Has the mood stricken me today? I cannot say. I only know I just got back from a gimpy bike ride to the coffee shop for the morning caffeine fix, and decided to start this. We will see what comes of it.

So meanwhile, I will start compiling my life's "adventures" here. Sometimes it may be memories sometimes it will be thoughts, sometimes it will be new experiences. Sometimes, probably most of the time, it will be mundane life shit that I just feel like putting on "paper".

So please, feel free to leave me your comments and thoughts as I try out this new venture.

Here's to firsts and what will come of them!