Thursday, January 7, 2010

Owen Conservancy

In stark contrast to Nina's blog from Mexico, I can offer only the quiet and contemplative snowscape that is Owen Conservancy.  It's snowing pretty good today and so the temperature rises to a balmy 22.

Today I'm so crabby from being cold and stuck in the house that after Chip shoveled the driveway and walked the dog and then came in to make himself breakfast, I barked, "Why don't you go to work?"  Time for some fresh air and an attitude adjustment.

Given it takes what feels like half an hour to pull the winter me together....get all the clothing layers on, find the gloves, hey, where's my hat, which boots, front door or back, iPod or not, phone, wait, where are my keys...I'm exhausted before I even leave the house.   It's mandatory that I get where I'm going quickly.  Owen borders our neighborhood and so after expending most of my energy trying to get out of the garage, it's a place to hit quick before I end up just driving myself to Starbucks.

The self treachery and trickery involved to get me to this place is all part of the very private hell that is my resistance to physical work.

The cross country tracks are buried in many spots.  As a self-conscious snowshoer (I feel like a poor relation to true winter athletes like XC skiers) I am always worried about being cursed in my absence by XC skiers on whose tracks I've trod upon...even if by accident, it's like throwing trash out the car window in terms of bad form.  Today the pressure is off.  They'll have to find their tracks again anyway so I'm free to roam.

I take the hill first rather than waiting.  I'm breathing heavy by the top and my pulse is really going.  At one point, my shoe comes off as they do when I first set out and I realize I'm walking on top of very deep snow.  Huh.  Proof that my snowshoes actually work.  It seems as if I'm just walking where one could anyway, but apparently not as I pull my leg out of a knee dip hole to get back into my shoe.

A clearing full of natural hutches...coyote dens?  Let me sing louder just in case.

I have my iPod and doing my usual singing to sets by both Dean Martin and Frank Sinatra and I scare a gigantic hawk from a tree.  He's beautiful but not a big fan of my rendition of That's Amore.  He flies ahead a tree at a time and then circles back as I bend away.  I hug the outermost perimeter of the park to milk the longest walk possible which takes me way back into the woods.  I happen upon a happy little friend that someone has built for everyone to enjoy losing his shape under all the new snow.  I pack him and shape him again and replace a missing arm....and trip and fall ass over teakettle for my efforts.  Later at home I peel off my layers and find I cut my knee and bled on my longjohns.  How rugged am I?

Lots of little nooks and crannys like this where critters probably sleep in this deep deep snow.  Almost cozy looking.  But for me, I'm no animal so it's home for a hot shower, lunch and coffee with lots of sugar.  And no more yelling at Chip today.


  1. :) Sounds like you and the outdoors get along just fine...

  2. Hey I got snowshoes for xmas. Call me next time you go.