(5) Eastern Shore of Maryland, December
Yesterday cracks the list with a mixture of frigid beauty and desolate peace that encouraged ecstatic introspection. And, after that first sentence, also encouraged comically overemphasized dismissive wanking gestures.
|Melting ice. Which is much better than melting Ice, after the unfortunate accident with an early 1990s rapper and a bunsen burner.|
The trail meandered around a lake, informally jutting over fallen trees and through frozen creekbeds. That small feeling lurking in the back of my mind--am I lost?--served to amplify each little noise, and magnify each unknown undulation.
|Interesting fact: I am two inches tall.|
From leaves to snow and back in a stride, every step brought a wholly new experience.
Most of all though, the idea that my parents were on the trail made the run a joyous celebration. Even when they are not by my side, I take them with me everywhere I go. Knowing that Mom and Dad, two amazing people to whom I owe everything, were tracing my footprints, changed a physically demanding run into a spiritually transcendent journey.
|Life is pretty amazing :)|
(4) Central Park, March
Running with awesome friend Brendan on a clear, frigid night, we came across 2 raccoons sitting attentively on the reservoir trail. Now, it was 7 PM and the park was almost completely empty, so we stopped for a look. Just then, a soft voice came from a bench beside the trail, "I am talking to them," she whispered. "I hope you don't harvest our kidneys, crazy lady," we thought. She went on to tell us all about conversing with raccoons, then ended the conversation by giving us her business card. "A Top-20 Clairvoyant in NYC!" it touted. It also said she gave massages, though I'm not sure if that was directed at people or the raccoons.
More than that though, I will never forget the skyline, silhouetted by the lurking feeling that my time in New York was coming to an end. It was just 8 miles, but provided a content closure to a frustrating four years.
Running with Lucho turned a bad day into one I will always cherish. I knew I loved Colorado--the places and things are one of a kind. But this summer, running with Tim or listening to live music in Nederland or walking the streets of Boulder, I realized that the people are what really sets CO apart. As I head back to start a new chapter of my life this summer, working at EDF, I owe a lot of that realization to the learning, laughing, and....well...living, experienced on this run.
|I most likely took this while bent over throwing up.|
First run with Megan, completely alone on beautiful trails in the middle of law school (and undergrad) finals. Even now, thinking about it with a smile on my face, it is impossible to ignore just how lucky I am.
18 miles through valleys and up mountains, along ridges and down snowbanks. Feeling small, feeling big, but most of all, feeling alive.
|THOSE FLOWERS ARE FREAKING HUGE.|
So here is to an awesome 2010 (/chugs almond milk)! Hope to see you on the trails (either those like the five above that are beautifully literal, or those of life hinted at in the commentary that probably seem pretentiously figurative) in 2011. I owe you guys so much for everything over the past year. From the bottom of my heart, thank you.