04 September, 2010

Labor Day

A slight change in plans. Instead of going with Team M to WinterPark the boys are homebound watching the house and dogs and doing Father and Son things. The weather couldn't be any more beautiful. Mornings being in the high 30's, how refreshing is that (it's pretty damn chilly if you're not up for it)? Pretty durn refreshing. The girls left yesterday so it's the Moose and me hanging out for the Labor Day weekend extravaganza of prosaicness and outliers.

We hit Flying J ranch. The scenery here at 8,000 feet plus is just nothing to take for granted (even though I do see this park almost every other day). First up was to take the doggies out for a walk. The singletrack here is beneath a canopy of thickly settled lodgepole pines so even in the middle of the day there is still plenty of shade with just some spots exposed. I let the dogs sniff away as we roll. I'm sure it's such a luxury for them with their otherwordly olfactory system to sniff at leisure at all the wild stuff Flying J has to offer. They're hyper from the gun but once we settle into a rhythm they kinda just walk side-by-side on the single track with Mason and me talking up a storm as much as a 5 year-old can contribute (come to think of it, my conversational skills are kinda lacking too). As we hike, some young kid on a skateboarding helmet riding with his Dad biffed it on some loose sand on the apex of a downhill turn. Nothing spectacular but I asked if he was okay and he was. I commented to the Moose on when we get back we should ride here being that the singletrack is so mild (except for said kid), topographically speaking, I kind of talked up doing a mountain bike ride for Mason. He seemed interested and once we got back to the house, we ate, I loaded the Moose's bike in my truck, and I wore my trailrunners (I would be his human outrigger just in case).

The first part's a loose downhill so I ran right next to him to make sure his front tire wouldn't wash nor his rear tire would slide past. So far so good and I'm pushing his shoulders up the climb as I run alongside him. That's pretty much the M.O. On the flat stuff he takes off. I'm imagining he's digging the way the wind feels against his face and hair and the occasional whiff of pine sap. He's instinctively avoiding the conspicuous obstacles (except when he doesn't). Every time we pass hikers going the opposite direction one if not all always holler words of encouragement to my five year-old mountain biking prodigy (he's my son afterall...). Next comes the cut-off to the shortcut. I shouldn't ask, but I do, and of course he takes me up on it. He could've done the full loop but I didn't want his first time off-road to be a chore. Next time, I say, we do the longcut instead of the shortcut okay? Like a good Moose, he always says okay Dad. Afterwards it's a caramel shake, a limeaid, and some artery clogging onion rings at the local Sonic for rewarding such a trooper. Never complained and came close to crashing several times in the loosey-goosey stuff (and that was just me!).

For our evening's entertainment we watch Toy Story 3 at the discount movie theatre. The Last Airbender was playing too but everybody and their brother gave that movie a pretty crappy review (even though I dig M. Night Shamalan).

So far so good Labor Day. I'm avoiding grading so far but eventually I'll do it (yuck!).

Monday. How many more times can one go to Flying J? Well if the one is us, another time! Took the doggies again since I feel so guilty for not taking 'em out during the work week.

A cold front's settling in as a forest fire begins out in Fourmile canyon in Boulder. Hopefully this brief front'll retard the growth of the fire.
It was another absolutely gorgeous day here in Paradise. In the mornings I'm starting to feel the bite of Fall. Speaking of mornings, when Mason and I were eating biscuits and (vegetarian) gravy as I was reading about Dublin in the NYTimes Travel Section, sweet Melissa told me about her singletrack soiree out in WinterPark. She's getting back into mountain biking (that's always a good sign!). Then old man Winter'll visit us. Not looking forward to that. In fact, I'm helping out Grandpa and Scotty for our potential cords this Winter.

Started to grade this evening. Work's reality has inopportuned itself on my vacation minded self.

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