Sunday, May 12, 2019

52nd revolution on the 3rd rock from the sun

May 6, 2019 - May 12, 2019

Monday (5 + 2) - After last Monday's 10K and the backlash my body gave me, I cut out the last mile.  I felt like I could, last Monday that last mile was a struggle.  I'm still trying to figure out this balancing act.  The hike with Dave and Jax seemed to help the stiffness I was feeling.

He never licks my face!
He was paying me back for stopping him for a selfie. 
Jax is no fool!

Tuesday (1 + 2)  - I had a bit of hip pain from Monday's run.  A busy schedule didn't allow for lunchtime gym time, I took the long walk to the cafe.  Taco Salad day, score!

Fiddle heads?
I really should fix the color on these.

Home to Jax stumbling down the stairs so we went for a hike in a new to us preserve.  I love the fact he will get in the car and settle in and go anywhere.  Gus just was not a dog who enjoyed the car, so we went to the same places within a 5-minute car ride.  I loaded him up and went off to find Erisman Woods which connects to Babcock Ridge.  I knew there would be some climbing and we might be lucky to log 2 miles, but the climbing would be good for both of us.   The trail maps online showed an out and back but I thought I read something about a loop in Erisman.  The map at the trailhead clearly showed a loop in both preserves, score!

The sign above the yellow blaze says "Easier Way"
Jax wasn't having any of that.

On the way back we came upon a decision, left was the trail and to the right "Easier Way"  Jax headed straight up the hill. GOOD BOY!  He really enjoys the running down part and is learning he has to endure the climbing to get to the fun stuff.

Spring is springing!
Nice to see the new fresh green.

Wednesday (3) - Mostly walking on my lunch run.  At Eastern Point Beach I saw a beautiful Bentley, then I noticed the license plate "ZULI" no way, could it be Rob?  May is when the Money Plant Mimi gave me blooms and I always think of her when I see the blooms.  Mimi's been gone 10 years in December, stupid cancer, she gave me a bouquet of dried money plant right after I started at Pfizer.  She was such an awesome lady, co-worker, friend, mentor.  As all of this wandered through my head I ran by the car and sure enough, it was Mimi's husband Rob.  I stopped, he looked at me with some recognition. I introduced myself and he said, "I recognized the face!"  we chatted for a bit does gardening at the beach on Tuesdays.  I cried a little as I continued on with my run.  But by the time I got back to campus I was laughing to myself about how yesterday was Taco Salad day, always a favorite with the lunch bunch Mimi used to round up to ensure everyone ate and we had time to gossip over the lunch table. 

Money Plant blooms
This is the even year haul, the odd year is about half of this
They are Biennial plants, they bloom every other year. 
I have to pull some seeds and plant next year for the odd year bloom.

Came home to an empty house and an overgrown lawn.  SCORE!  I love mowing the lawn, no seriously.  Yard work is a form of accomplishment.  Enjoyed mowing the lawn and had a beer on the front porch and having the neighbors and their dogs stop by to chat and the dogs to get scratches.  Dave and Jax came home to find me talking to Jamie and scratching Chewy and Coco, whoops!

The Beer was a Grey Sail Wheelhouse Series Pearl
Oyster Stout

Thursday (1 + 3) -  Mikey gave me some old Lacross balls.  The therapy ball I use to work out the kink in my left hip is good, these seem a bit better.  I have no idea why.   I also finally strung together my hip feeling better the rest of the afternoon and evening AFTER running because I work on the bound up butt tissue with the ball after running.  I put one of those Lacross balls on my dresser with the intention of using it in the morning, see if that helps the discomfort and erases the hobbling.  It's worth a shot, right?

I was really looking forward to this.
The last of my 12 Stouts of Christmas.
It was a drain pour - tasted like cough syrup.
Fruit stouts generally have that taste (to me), I have no idea why I thought this would be different.

Dave and Jax and I went on a hike at Tri-Town Preserve.  It was getting pretty clear both of them were not really interested in a long hike so we huffed it back just short of 3 miles.

Friday (2) - Quiet day at work, the crisis crew waited until later in the day to strike.  I really loathe walking into chaos, especially when it could have been dealt with the day before and not be a crisis. I did have to let someone know we needed 500 entry letters signed, they could either wear out their Montblanc or I could set them up with a DocuSign account.  Fortunately, this didn't have to happen immediately and we have a week or two to get our collective shit together for this event

A hike with Dave and Jax before dinner was nice.

Saturday (25 + 3) - The weather is perfect for a ride and I'm perfectly in the middle of feeling like crap.  Advil helped.  I was NOT going to let an opportunity for a decent day to ride pass me by. Got my Garmin talking to the radar and the new headlight set up and off Ruby and I went to see how this was all going to work.  I knew the beach would be fairly busy with Spring Fest perfect opportunity to learn how the radar works.

Watching the world go by. 
He loves this and so do I!
Gus also loved this activity.

OMG the radar is awesome, the Garmin beeps and displays a dot at the bottom of the screen (the approaching car) and there is a dot at the top of the screen (me) and it shows it approaching, the car (or cars) dot (s) moving toward the top dot and then passing.  If the vehicle is going fast (this seems to be if it is over 35 MPH) the display shows red.  I could spend more time paying attention to the road in front of me, missing potholes and not bashing into them.  Plus not being startled by a car when I'm on the back roads.  It was a very pleasant ride experience (my body, on the other hand, was being a bastard, I was glad to not be with anyone so I could go as slow as I needed to) not having to watch my mirror, taking my eyes off the road ahead of me, and listening for cars approaching, which I rarely hear.  These were the best big bucks I have spent, this will make riding on the road a bit more enjoyable.

A few more Advil, super hot shower, and some food and a bit of knitting on the front porch with my companion Jax made me feel much better.  WTF.  Eventually, I was glad I went on the ride.

Jax and I had a nice sunny hike at Grills late in the afternoon.  We had to navigate through a toppled tree, one way was full of briars and the other way was figuring out how to plow through all the branches of the tree.  We tried the briar way, no go.  So we managed to get through all the branches.  It was a pretty big tree, quite a fun obstacle!  I keep meaning to throw a pair of clippers in my car to bring on hikes, for these just in case things as well as the briars.  My legs are torn up from the briars from hiking and from riding the woods. 

Sunday (0) - Yeah I think it's really a zero Sunday the rain is getting progressively worse.   Of course, this was the morning I woke up full of energy.  FFS.

All in all a pretty good week, they all have ups and downs, I guess it is all in how a person manages them.  With age comes wisdom?  Or With age comes apathy?

Knitting - 

Finished a pair of socks for Dave started on cobbling together some summer hiking socks for me from the leftover sock yarn.  I'm never sure what to do with the leftovers.  I can also use these low socks for biking in cooler temperatures.

Reading - 

"The Grapes of Wrath"
John Steinbeck

Status:  In progress

I'm going to claw my eyes out before this is over.  I think I said the same thing when I had to read this for Ms. Varner's American Lit class in HS. 

Beth, kinda hoping the radar was wrong about Sunday.

Sunday, May 5, 2019

Just let it go...

April 29, 2019 - May 7, 2019

Monday (6) - Reflecting on this run, while I could do it, and rather slow at that, an hour after the run my body was NOT happy.  This means the next one will be better and possibly next week and then maybe Shad Bloom.  Jonny puts stupid ideas in my head. 

Don't worry I didn't take all of them, only one package.

Tuesday (1 + 3) - Walked a mile on the treadmill at 6% grade, that works up a sweat and did Booty Core #20, it's been a while since I did a full class.  I felt that!

Jax is saying "Jeez o'Pete, again, again we are trespassing? You better not get me locked in jail, I don't do well in a cage."
We turned around.  Although I do think we were allowed here.
I thought they were no hunting signs.  Jax is clearly a better reader than I!

After work I took Jax to Candlewood Hill State Wildlife Management Area, it is part of the Groton Open Space Association complement of properties, this one is also partially state-owned.  There are no marked trails or trail map.  I was able to find quite a few Mountain Bike segments when I did a search on Strava and also found a heatmap that served well enough as an overall map.  I uploaded one mountain bike ride to Strava to use to guide me along with the map.  I was really looking forward to exploring this.  I knew it would be hilly and that Jax loved hills so we'd have fun.  What I wasn't expecting was the road noise from I-95, it really buts right up to the Highway at the south end of the property.  The noise and OMG the exhaust followed us up the first climb.  I could hear Dave bitching in the back of my mind, and me rolling my eyes (Jax too).  As we went further North in the property it was better, at least the smell was gone if you listened you could hear the road noise.

Heat Map makes it easy to see the trails ridden.
We went as far North as the A.
The blue line to the left of the F - J segment is where we saw the No Trespassing signs.

I'll try this again from the North entrance on CT184, it looks like you can park in the back of a bathroom showroom and access the trails.  There is supposed to be another entrance to the property off the road.  I couldn't see it when I drove by, definitely not going to drag Jax along on a leash along the side of CT184.  You can sort of follow along with the Strava image below.  We had about 3/4 of a mile to go to hit CT184.  Maybe when the trees leaf out it will be better.

Wednesday (1 + 2) - As it goes with my aging body, it isn't the day after it is the day after the day after what you did hits me.   While my body didn't hurt, no joint aches and pains beyond the normal level (annoying), I was tired, exhausted really.  Running a 10K on Monday probably wasn't the smartest thing to do.  I dragged along most of the day, taking the long way to get to the cafeteria in hopes that would help.  Not really. 

From Candlewood.
I'm impressed at how much he is allowing me to take his picture
He's a pretty photogenic fella.

I worked late and then Dave and I took Jax to Burlingame, parking at the Duck Trail (haha Jonny) and doing a Sammy C's, Secret Trail loop back up the Duck Trail to the car.

Thursday (3) - Surprisingly I felt rested when I woke up so taking it easy on Wednesday was the correct course of action.   I wasn't moving very fast for a 3-mile lunch walk/run.  It got my heart rate up a little quicker than expected, but it was pretty warm out being 60F and all.  HA HA HA...

Mean Old Tom - I like it!
I bought this a while ago, not sure why it sat for months before I drank it.
There will be more!

Dinner out with some friends was nice.  Got home to the sound of Dave's bass (yes it can be heard from the front porch - at times all the way to Jeff H's house, 3 doors down, as Jeff has mentioned to me) but Dave's truck wasn't there.  Jax was running around in a panic.  Did a bike inventory, one of Dave's was missing and discovered he left on the recording session with Cedric.  I fed Jax and then took him for a walk.  He was rather energetic for an in town walk, I chalked it up to being home alone at Dog Dinner time.   He's a goof and was remarkably well behaved too.

Friday (2) -  The day that started out with me wanting so desperately to say "Lack of planning on your part does not constitute an emergency on my part."  I didn't, I thought it, I didn't say it, ok I muttered it, to myself.  I didn't even say it when I scrolled back in the e-mail to find out they knew they needed this documentation Thursday morning yet, waited until 7:30 a.m. Friday to request the documentation from me.  There was no way for me to get this until after 10:00 a.m. and that caused a bit of whining and complaining and we are going to get an observation, IDGAF, I can only do what I can do.

Pole #13 by a dilapidated camp building.

I had a lovely 90-minute nap, then Dave woke me up so we could take Jax for a hike.  I needed that nap.  We took a nice walk down the old camp road to Watchaug Pond where we were greeted by two off-leash dogs running around not listening to their guardian.  Eventually, the chaos barked and lunged its way up the single track and we went down to the pond.

Saturday (5 + 3) - Went out to Woody Hill for a mountain bike ride with a plan of 8 (I opted to skip the HS XC course and then I got lost by the quarry) so I made 5.  I'll call it a win.  One of the mud bogs was so deep my back wheel sunk past the axel and then the grinding of grit on the brake pads and disc break started.  For fucks sake (I told you I liked that phrase and will now overuse it, haha) I was happy I overpacked water was able to clean out the brake pads and disc enough to get the breaks working properly again and not grind the pads and the disc.  Fussy things disc brakes but now I want a road bike with them.  So much quicker stopping than rim breaks.

He's a lot less muddy with the last mud puddle to clean him off.
Barney got a bath when we got home.

Dave called and he wasn't going to be joining Jax and me on a hike.  Well, I could say I was sad about this, I was only mad that he waited so late to call.  We went out to a new to us Avalonia Land Conservancy preserve in North Stonington.  There are three that connect, probably a total of 12 miles out and back, so we tackled the closer one and the one with less climbing.  We didn't explore all the side trails and still logged 3 miles and a nice long dip in the river for Jax, I was a little nervous he was going to wade in too far or not come out at all.  60F and humid is not his kind of weather. 

Happy guy in the cool water.  He went in all the way to his collar.

Sunday (0) - Maybe this will turn into something else if the rain ever winds down, but for now (1 p..m.), I'm calling it a zero-day.

The covered bridge from Saturday's hike.


"The Grapes of Wrath"
by John Steinbeck

The dialect has me cringing, as does the story.  What a horrible time in our countries history.  Funny how things never really change. 


Finished the first of Dave's pair of socks.  I much prefer knitting one sock on one circular.  I gave it a go with two socks on two circulars and it was making knitting not fun. 

Beth, huh, that was a pretty full week, perhaps I've earned Sunday off!  Or brownies?  Or beer?  Or all three?

Sunday, April 28, 2019

A couple week catch up - I had ONE job

April 15, 2019 - April 21, 2019

Monday (5) - Hills with Ro were on the agenda.  Usually, a Wednesday thing but today was my Mon-Wednes-day because I'm off Thur, so Wed would be my Friday so Monday was my Wednesday.  Ha ha.  We

I see you have cheese.  I like cheese.  - Jax

Sucks you can't stream the Boston Marathon anymore.  I tracked a few runners.  I was surprised when it stopped telling me about Leslie's status.  Sorry!  Well, at least that is over with and you can stick to what you love, trails!

The new mattress arrived, we did one of those foam buy it online.  It comes in a box you could fit a 5-year-old in, for a king-sized mattress.  Dave got that all setup and said the unfolding process was pretty cool.

Tuesday (2 + butt and gut) - Data point of one:  No complaints on the new mattress, it's like sleeping in a hug without having to deal with someone breathing on you!

OMG this NE Porter was AMAZING!
Seriously AMAZING!

My morning was spent listening to the worlds longest annual meeting.  Glad I didn't think I'd have time for a quick bike ride at lunch and pack all that gear only to find out I have 60 minutes all in for a workout and to grab lunch.

Peppy walk and then butt and gut stuff and back to my desk for more sitting.  Ugh.

Wednesday (3 + 22) - Enjoyed a run walk in the sun, so nice it came back after being gone a few days.  Met up with Charlotte to bike Tour de Farms, she was a little hesitant with hills. I wouldn't call that a hilly ride, but some do (Mikey) there is one "big" one on Chester Maine but otherwise it gently rolls, or at least that's what I think and we are all entitled to our own opinions, even if they are wrong!

These tiny booboos from my last mountain bike crash hurt!  So tiny yet, ouchy!

Thursday (745) - Drove out to MI to see family.

Friday (0) - Uninspired/rainy/gray/MI

Sunshine - the anthesis of her name.
She lets me use HER room when I visit my parents.

Saturday (0) - Keeping the Zero Streak alive!

HS Track
I think I was a JR.

Sunday (16) - Got out for a muddy gravel grind on the back roads.  It had rained for at least the previous week.   It was a nice muddy ride!  sure I stymied a few farm dogs not used to seeing bicycles.  The seat on Barney is NOT meant for being sat in that long, it is a mountain bike after all, NOT a gravel grinder set up for endless miles in the saddle.

The Great MI Stone Wall


I've been piddling around with hats trying to decide what my next project will be.  I decided I'd finish up the last of the sock wool and make socks.  I forget so much even reviewing my knitting notes, in this case, the notes for each person I knit socks for.  The pair I finished up on Sunday will make a nice Father's day present, not their original recipient, but these things happen.  My gauge was off 2 stitches to the inch because I used a new to me knitting method. I knitted these one sock on one circular method, just to get used to knitting that way.  Why make myself miserable trying a new method complicating it by doing two socks at a time.  I did like it much better than two circulars to knit a tube.  The socks may not match row to row as they would knitting the pair together, however one or two rows off won't make that much of a difference.

It is hard to photograph socks.
I should find my sock blocker and use that.

The second pair I started both toe up socks on one circular needle, to see how it goes to knit two socks on one circular.  The toe is the clunkiest part with two socks on two circulars, not so much with two on one circular!  Pshew!!  I'm nearly done with the toes on this latest pair and we shall see if I'll be expanding my collection with 40"+ needles.  I do very much love the new Addi needle with the extra pointy points and supple cord.  My birthday is soon, I could splurge on some new needles... hmmmmm

The toes are done!

On a different note, I did finally figure out the correct way to pick up the wraps for the heels.  You Tube is such a wonderful thing, not only can you watch videos of Scots chasing cheese rounds down hills the kinetic learner can also learn how to do something correctly by watching it.

I"m not sure about the color, kinda cammo-ish.
I love this yarn though.


I spent a lot of time in the car in the last two weeks and got through quite a few books.

In Progress:

"The Grapes of Wrath"
by John Steinbeck 

I may stop before it gets too depressing.  Or not, it's been 30 years since I read it last.


"The Queen of the Tearling"
by Erika Johansen

I think I wasn't in the right frame of mind to start this sci fi, plus I kept hearing TEA not TEAR and thinking of Chinese tea plantations not an imaginary kingdom. 

"The New York Times: Footsteps"
by David Colacci

Not quite the right time for a series of short stories.


"The Bat"
(Harry Hole #1)
by Jo Nesbø Don Bartlett (Translator)  Translated from Norwegian.

A Norwegian detective series, this book is set in Australia.  This made it difficult to follow, and the detective Harry Hole was also a bit of an enigma.  The mystery was further complicated by the author jumping around.  I've heard the series gets better, I will stick with it.  Possibly cutting out the middle 3 or 4 chapters may make the book make more sense.  It wasn't awful but it wasn't great.

"Frontier Grit: The Unlikely True Stories of Daring Pioneer Women"
by Marianne Monson

Some may call them the first social justice warriors, I wouldn't.

We can learn so much from the past, and apply it to the present. These 12 women either did jobs it was presumed only men could do, Charlie the Stagecoach driver was my top pick, or figured out how to make a life, and in some cases a fortune, while the men did only the work the men could do.  It came down to a need and mustering up the courage and the gumption to just get it done. Very entertaining read.

"The Forgotten Room"
(Jeremy Logan #4)
by Lincoln Child

I picked this up because it was on a Rhode Island reading list, and I really wanted to fill up my iPod with books. It is a mystery set in Newport, RI in an old mansion. Was this a suicide or murder in this old mansion, now used as a scientific 'think tank' with a very curious secret room. Very interesting, and the author leaves you guessing till the very end who done it!  Think I'll skip back and find books 1 - 3 in the detective series!

"God, War, and Providence: The Epic Struggle of Roger Williams and the Narragansett Indians against the Puritans of New England"
by James A. Warren

It started by covered the Great Swamp Battle.  On my list of places to check out has been the monument there.  I need to move that one up the list, after all it's only a few minutes away and I could ride my bike there or take my mountain bike and ride the surrounding trails.   It got a little fact and figure-ish but all in all very good, well written and researched.  One observation by Roger Williams still holding true today:  "Rhode Island is very localized."  This holds true today in a state measuring 37 x 48 miles having 47 separate school districts

April 22, 2019 - April 28, 2019

Monday (745) - Drove back to RI, why why why why does it always take two hours longer?

So much green in MI!

Tuesday (3 + 3) - Run walk at lunch to enjoy the weather and move my somewhat stiff body from 14 hours in the car.  My last trip my knees were all wonky and buckling, that did not happen this time.  So something is improving.

It doesn't go negative.

Took Jax and Dave out for a hike in Booooorrrrinnnggg  Bradford Preserve.  Well Dave was supposed to be in Philly recording tracks with Cedric playing the bass but that got moved, I balanced my time so I'd be able to take Jax on a quick hike before I left again to meet a friend for dinner.

The VIMEO video of a clip of the session with Cedric - Cedric Napoleon - Christopher DBG

Wednesday (5 +173 ) - Hills with Ro before she leaves again, they are off to FL.  Beautiful sunny breezy day perfect for short sleeves!  Ahhhh, now if it can only stay just like this.  And off to Short Hills NJ for the company stockholder meeting.

Thursday (173 and a 2-hour nap) - Good meeting. Longer than usual, well we do have a new CEO and the old CEO is now the Lead Independent Director so there was a bit of tug o'war.  The old CEO was generally a pretty jolly fellow, he was even more jolly!  It is amazing the transformation people go through when they retire.  Even at the most senior level of the company.  I saw it with my dad growing younger and calmer by the month, and most recently my friend Anita, she looked far past her age of 65 when she retired, now, 2 months out, 55 at the most!

Girl Peep, I gots two questions for ya:
1) where do you go?
2) can I have what you are eating?

It was nice to see many of my colleagues and my new boss in person as well as meet people I've only talked to on the phone or e-mailed with from the new assignment I added to my slate last year.  I think one of them was a bit stymied when I hugged her. Donna has been so awesome and patient and helpful, I couldn't help myself!

Friday (2) - Working from home was awesome today, I could productively balance work, laundry, and sleep. 

Always curious to see if Jax will use the stone bridge or go through the water.

Saturday (344 + 5) - A friend from HS, now living in Alabama, let me know she was going to be doing a Spartan Beast in Vernon NJ was that anywhere near me?    Yes and no.  There are a handful of women I would do anything for, she is one of them.  We may not be close like we once were but when she reaches out, about anything, I'm there. There are women I know I may never be close to again or may never have been close to but we shared something and because of that I would not hesitate to say yes if they asked for anything.  Well, money, that's a tough one to separate me from!

I drove out to see her tackle the first obstacle, getting to the start line, and then for the next six and a half hours, I managed to miss her at every opportunity!  When we talked I asked how long this was going to take her, 2.5 hours?  She said typically 3.5 - 4.  Ok, so when I finally figured out the course map and viewing points I kept in mind the first obstacle I could see.  Well the second, was the water and mud pits and a thing to climb up and over which was made more challenging by being wet and the people being wet.  I enjoyed watching that for two hours, then figured I must have missed her when I went to the porta potty.  I watched for a bit and still didn't see her so I ventured to the next viewing area, up the ski slope I hiked.  It was cold and windy.  They did close down the water obstacles because of the temperature. 

At this point, I talked with someone and they said: "You do know you can track your runner."  Well, son of a bitch, I got her tracked and found out I left the first obstacle about 15 minutes before she got there.  Well, son of a bitch.  I had no idea which obstacles were being tracked, at that point two.  Between the two I did a pace calculation and she should be just about at the last obstacle so up the ski hill I hiked for the third time.  Only to get to the top and get the ding ding ding Tammy Bender finished.  For fucks sake, I had ONE job!!!

I got back to the finish area found my friend muddy and happy and looking rather energized.  She was not expecting the hills.  I said but you are at a ski slope...  we laughed and gave each other a hard time like it had not been two years since the last time we saw each other only a few days.   For the most part, she enjoyed it got a little annoyed getting stuck in conga lines of people trudging up the hills.  The point of a Spartan is to be miserable. 

She made it over!

Don't know if I would spectate at one again, for Tammy, sure, anyone else I see regularly, sorry, probably no.  Navigating the Spartan website to find course and spectator information was difficult, and you have to pay to spectate, which I know, stupid, but... it is what it is but I kinda thought that would make it a little easier for spectators, fork over your 20 bucks and they give you some hints on how to enjoy the experience and see your runner.  Not so much...  I brought lots of layers, and I'm glad I did, it was mid 40's mostly cloudy and windy, I needed them! While they say not to bring in outside food, I wish I would have disobeyed and snuck some granola bars and a water bottle in my backpack. No one checked my bag.  Guess if there is a next time I'll know.

Hint:  Make sure you get the obstacle names in the picture!
I took a second picture of just the obstacle names - don't do that get it all in one frame!
Green was the Beast 13 miles
Purple (and the green) was the Ultra 32 miles
Orange was the kids

We shared a pizza and she went off to wash her muddy clothes in the laundry mat and I made my way back home, dreading what hand the CT traffic would deal me. Till the next time.

Sunday (4) - In an effort to shake loose some cobwebs I took Jax on an in town walk, that helped, a half an hour outside I felt better.  Being outside for so long yesterday did take a lot out of me.  Plus 6 hours of driving.   Jax was fairly good, only tried to take my arm off once, chasing a truck.  He is such a spaz.

Later in the afternoon, we took him on a hike in the drizzle, because a leash walk never cuts all the crazies!  A brief encounter with Jonny was a welcome distraction.  Jax was a well behaved off leash dog. Facebook produced a memory of when I used to hike this part of Sammy C's with Gizzy, so we set out to see if we could find it.  We did!  The tree on the right fell down, you can see it on the grond.  That's the spot!  So cool we found it!

Gizmo (he was 12)
I miss that old curmudgeon.


That's pretty much that.  Driving, running, hiking, biking, sleeping, spectating, reading, knitting....  lots of doing.

Two weeks where I felt good 97% of the time, and the other 3% I took some acetaminophen or ibuprofen and felt better!

Beth, seriously if someone is going to NE please bring me back a case of that Porter I'll be grateful! OK, fine, a six pack, I shouldn't be greedy.

Monday, April 15, 2019

In a chatty mood

April 8 - April 14, 2019

Monday (5 + 1) - yeah the numbers get rounded up or down I'm not really keeping track other than the total Strava tells me.  I admit I get a little itchy not keeping track, then again I spend a lot less time lamenting where I was to where I am now.

Funny, I was thinking as I was running about how could I have possibly run three marathons and an ultra?  How in the hell did I do that?  I did it, I have the proof.  Guess that was then and this is now and it does leave me more time for knitting and reading?

This made me chuckle.

I started out walking, that stupid hip. I'm sure it is the elliptical.  I ran a few steps and my hip felt better, I kind wondered if it would. Manage to set intervals on the fly and meandered around for 5 miles running for 5 minutes and walking for 45 seconds.  The weather wasn't anything spectacular, gray and really rather disgusting, but it was nice, in a way, it was warm and the fog was really cool along the water.  I kept repeating the same song on the iPod, I used to know how to set it so it would keep playing the same song.  I was in the mood for Seether's Remedy.

Muddddddddddd - Jax

Dave hadn't taken Jax out and it was after 6 when I got home.  Jax was running around with his pre-dinner antics and his dinner ball and Dave thought we'd take a short hike and then feed him.  HA!  Jax is no dummy, he wasn't having anything of putting on his collar or his vest, Dave gave up, fed him and we had a quick hike.

Tuesday (2) - No elliptical, I snuck out of the gym before Mikey saw me.  As I was walking and looking around I saw a deer on the plant side, stopped to take a picture, took me a while fumbling around with my phone and the deer just stood there and stared at me.  I hope it's not sick.  Probably very used to people living on a research campus?  Far far less skiddish than the ones I see in the woods, they scare me I scare them, we stop, we stare, one of us screams and we all bolt away!

Amy of the Pointy Elbows had 15 minutes for me.  She has such insight.  She has MS so we have lots to talk about with invisible illness and staying active and dealing with a flaring beast.  We talk about how I've been feeling and she asked if I kept track.  I've tried, I got an app, that didn't help, then I'd write stuff down but I kept saying I feel ok.  I asked her if she tracked and she explained how she did her journal, every night.  I groaned.  She suggested a different tact.  Document what pain killers you are taking and where you are in your cycle and if you feel compelled to make more notes (napping, pain, etc).  Don't focus on HOW you feel, because no matter what you always say "I'm fine. Which we both know translates to Fucked up Insecure Neurotic and Emotional."  Got I love this woman!   She can feel when my tissue is inflamed and she said it was so bad two weeks ago, it's better this week, and my affect is better so clearly I am feeling better, but I didn't really get into how bad I felt that week, but when she digs into my muscles she knows.  I had no idea.

Wednesday (5 + 2) -  Ro is back from CO!  Hills with her and Dar nice to catch up with both the retirees back from their winter vacations.  Ro to CO and Dar to FL.  The sweater fit Dar perfectly, although I'm a little not sure on the A-Line shaping.

Gus 2017
Jax is in the same spot from the other side.

I had Jax duty and we went to Grills.  It has been so long since I've been there, I did miss it.  We did the old HS XC trail, got a little sidetracked to a hunting blind?  All in all it was good.  Jax wasn't too full of energy so I didn't feel bad cutting him super short on a hike.

Thursday (Core + 21) - First road ride of the season!!  We stayed on flat ground at a conservative pace.  This felt really good and all the tinkering I did with the cleats on my summer shoes before a core work out served me well.  My knees were much happier than they had been on Barney last weekend when I wore my summer shoes.

I think I can use this for my Tue / Thur lunch ride.  I feel SO. MUCH. BETTER. on the bike, omg.

Friday (7) - Met up with Charlotte to show her Bradford Preserve and Woody Hill.  When we met up she said the 3 mile Cross Country Loop?  I said, well I was thinking I'd take you down into Woody Hill so you can get an idea of how to navigate that if you were going to come back and explore on your own.  She was happy the ride was going to be more than 3 miles, pshew!!  We rode the first 1/2 of the XC loop, then Hansel and Gretel. I hopped off my bike for a log and Charlotte said, 'You do know your wheels roll over stuff?'  yeah I can be a wimp.  When we came up on the big boulder roller, I said, 'let me see you go over this, it's a roller' she up and over like butter.  So I did too!  I really need to ride with more women to gain my confidence, it helps to see someone else tackle the obstacle rather than fear crashing.

Can I eat it? --  Jax

We ventured down Woody Hill Road to Woody Hill, I showed her where the trailhead for that was, and we ventured on to Naughty Nurse, a very easy 2 ish mile trail, which loops!  Who knew?  I get so turned around in there...  I had my courage up and tackled most of the things I usually walk.  One did get me pretty well.  Barney's tire hit on the rock and we stopped dead and I fell to my left on the stone wall.  Ripped my jacket and bruised up my elbow.  Damn it!    We looked at the spot and discovered a rock had been moved!  Charlotte put it back, it fit perfect and she rolled over easy peasy.  I went next, a little nervous.  Falling on rock walks hurts!!  Rolled over easy peasy.

Ahhhh I can hang my nose and jowls out the window.  -- Jax

After that my poor sense of direction on twisty trails had to be relied on to get us over the dam.  I managed with one OOOPS we went the wrong way.  And we were over and back on to Woody Hill road to go back and do the second half of the XC trail.

Saturday (23 + 3) - Originally I was supposed to run a 5K with Jess in Willimantic, but she's been having some serious foot issues and didn't even want to trust walking the 3.1 miles.  How about our annual Tour de Mansfield, the short loop?  YES!!  I was so happy to load Ruby up in the car again and head out to Storrs.  The only problem was what to wear.  It was cool and rained all night.  the rain was supposed to end by 10 a.m. in-land.  I overdressed, it was up to 70F.  Whoops.  I forget how much warmer it is in-land this time of year.

Jess and Me
Storrs, CT
After the rain
Before the ride

It's a hilly loop and a good test for where I am fitness wise and how I'm dealing with the beast wise.  I felt really good while we were riding, there were a couple moments where I had some doubts, but they passed.  I felt great after we were done, even though I was a little overheated.  Jess brought shorts, she was smart, I did not.  She got to show off her bruised legs from her mountain bike race the weekend before.

I came home to a sad Jax, his peeps left him, he is home alone so rarely.  I quick took a shower and got out his collar and vest and he was all woo hooo spinning around like crazy.  Well, this is a good sign.  The closer I got to the coast the cooler and foggier it got.  That is also a good sign we can have the run of whichever preserve I picked.  I decided on Grills again and wanted to check out the Big Hill and the new White trail and see where that took us.

Hill?  What Hill? - Jax

Jax wasn't too impressed with the Big Hill but he loved the wild turkeys he saw.  We had a nice hike and I still managed to get turned around and miss part of the White trail, how I turned right off a trail and went up and out and back and ended up not where I expected is beyond me.

Sunday (2) - Beautiful day, perfect for a ride either on or off road, while I didn't feel tired, I knew three days of riding was good and I should finish the taxes and do some housewifey stuff.

Jax:  One of these days Cat
Yoko: Neener Neener Foo Foo

Dave and I took Jax to Burlingame late in the afternoon, just as the mist started.  Cooked up a short loop and Jax rewarded us by getting goofy on the slippery ledge downhills.  What is it with him and wanting to play or bash into the back of our legs when its the least little bit dangerous?

I totally forgot to update on Knitting and Reading in my last post...


by: Emily Ruskovick

Status: Finished

I'm not sure what to think about this.  I learned something about dementia, something I hope I never have to know, but it was helpful in understanding what some friends are going through and have gone through with their parents.

The story was told from several points of view and the sequence was not sequential, so it was confusing in that way.  Plus I managed to get two characters confused which is my own fault, so that caused some distress.

I can't recommend the book nor can I not recommend the book.  I didn't love it nor did I hate it.

It simply was, a story, in a story, wrapped in another story and it's hard to know what to say, except I learned something and I always like learning things.

"Rose:  My life in service to Lady Astor"
by: Rosina Harrison

Status:  In progress

I like how the author started the book saying this was her story from her point of view from when she interacted with Lady Astor.  Rose, Lady Astor's Ladies Maid, is as much of a character as Lady Astor.   When Rose started out her goal was to be a ladies maid, she made it happen! A different view of what it is like to be 'in service'.


I started some mitered mittens from Elizabeth Zimmerman, she writes pithy (the work she uses) directions.  I hate the word pithy, but it works in this instance.

I do like how she instructs:  "you need to get this gauge for this pattern to work" "increase however you like to increase" it is very much up to the knitter to make decisions on parts of the pattern, she gives you the numbers for casting on and when to increase or decrease, but the details, those are yours to determine.

These mitten had an 'after thought thumb' so you knitted the mitten as a tube with an end and snipped as stitch "just about where your thumb knuckle is" and "pick out 7 stitches either side of the snip.  On my hand, the mitten tube was a bit snug and the thumb pulled.

Knitted up a few more cloches, and a couple other different hats.  The cloche pattern is still my favorite.

Landed on finishing up the last of my sock yarn and started a pair of socks for Dave with the once sock on one circular method.  I think they might be too big, I knitted about 3 inches of the foot and Dave seemed to think they'd be fine.  I hope the yarn shrinks up a bit, I still think they will be loose.  I should have only cast on 68 stitches instead of 72, I didn't factor in how much looser my knitting gets once I get past knitting the toe, plus I am using a new kind of needle, pointier and smoother, that has to make a difference with gauge.  Ah, a good dunk in boiling water will shrink even the stubbornest of wool, if necessary.

All in all a great week.  By the end of the week I was feeling like my old self.  I think it's the road bike.  I have missed Ruby, we didn't have a great end of biking season last year but we are starting out the season on the right foot or should I say tire?  ha ha ha

Beth, a little long in the tooth, thanks for sticking with me!