adventure, fitness and nutrition, friendship

The Season Is Over

My first tennis season in the senior league (over 50) is over. Done. Finished. Kaput. Five weeks went by fast and I learned so much this time around. Maybe I was ripe for learning. Maybe it was a good stress reliever. Maybe it was just good timing.

Nonetheless my partner and I lost every match, but we worked together and achieved our goals for the season. We won a game. We won her serve. We made it to deuce many times. We won single games. We won multiple games, but never a match. We took a tennis lesson. We learned to work together. We had fun. We exercised together. We even had a cheering section for some matches.

It was my partner’s first tennis experience. She never served or knew how to score in tennis. She didn’t even have a racquet. From the start she learned. She adapted. She got better. She faced her fear of not wanting to try. She was a great partner for me this season. She can look back at herself and I say look what I did now. And what a great feeling it is for me to know I encouraged her the same way another encouraged me. 

We met some people we never would have met before had we not joined tennis. We traveled to some neighborhoods that were new to us. We played in the cold. We played in pollen-filled spring air. I’m pretty sure my eyes looked like I was crying in the last match however it was really all the pollen that was getting to me. We heard some great comments from seasoned players. Just keep playing. The more you play the better you will get. Ya’ll are doing great. 

Lo and behold we signed up again for the next season. It is not the senior league this time around so we shall see how the new adventure goes. For now I will remember this season as my first in the golden years age group. Where teams don’t physically move as much but they are well trained to place the ball where you just can’t hit it back. I guess that’s what I like about tennis. No two games are the same. No opponents are the same. The weather is never the same. 

You just show up. Do your best. Win or lose, you live on. Pretty simple way to get some fitness in for a day. I can happy that my body allows me to step onto the court each week to play again. Some don’t have that ability. I treasure the fact that I can compete at any level.

adventure

24 Hours

I had a small window of time to do a lot. Would I get it all in? Should I try to fit it all in? Do I focus on the need to’s or want to’s? I just said fuck it, and rolled with the punches.

I started out solo by car. I was pretty excited so I got up extra early. I totally miscalculated my arrival time as I changed time zones. Oops! First diversion in place unintentionally.

Visited a military installation. That was not a new experience, but something I hadn’t done in 10 years or so. Brief visit was good for me. Grabbed a coffee and snack with a buddy. Did some apartment shopping in the town I was visiting. Interesting to see old vs. new and how one mile one way you get one quality of life and the other way is completely different. Hence the purpose of shopping around.

Took a scenic route to visit the big city by car. Did some walking. Then some window shopping. Popped into a cozy bar for some punch in bucket and some good ole boy music. Not planned and not my normal environment, but in the end the lack of planning was good and so was the the punch bucket. I guess I sucked it from the bucket.

Time to kill before a dinner reservation. Time to sneak into a tattoo shop to get small piece of art to commemorate the 24 hour stint with my buddy. One for me two for the other. Inked up in no time. Feeling a little tired but time to fuel up to endure the time clock.

Refueling station (aka meal time) was again unplanned but a unique experience nonetheless. A supper club with 3 floors and a roof top. We sat on the main floor but could observe everyone coming and going from the main door. This of course made for good people watching while the food was prepped. Smash burger and turkey pastrami sammie for the win. Not five star but maybe a three for the food quality, but the substance was enough to level up in the time category.

Just when I thought I packed in enough we booked tickets to the hockey game. What are we thinking? Already pooped but we made it. A win for the home team and some great drunk people watching. An unexpected/unplanned adventure that exceeded my expectations.

A quick trip to the hotel to crash. Just a few hours to spare for rest. I didn’t want to get up. It was so early the coffee wasn’t even done brewing in the lobby. Such a tragedy. My route back home involved a plane. Solo again. A full flight. A mask which I almost forgot about. I couldn’t sleep. My mind was racing over what I just did in a short 24 hour period.

The year of 2022 has brought so much new to me. New ways to look at life. New experiences. New adventures that lack my normal plan– gram style. There are some days where I think life is an absolute shit storm while other days I think are just amazing as they can be.

Sometimes I write to have memories for later. Sometimes I write for therapy. Today I write to say today is a gift and tomorrow is never guaranteed. Take 24 hours and spin it your way. Lose the worry of tomorrow and be present in today.

Tomorrow may look different for you. You never know. Therefore embracing what is today is a true gift. My 24 hours with my buddy was a gift. One I will treasure for years to come. 24 hours. Your gift. Spend those hours your way. Enjoy!

adventure

Bricks & Alpacas

Bricks remind me of strength. Bricks are the basic foundation for many buildings and / or empires. Bricks would be the last thing I thought about carrying around today yet I am so excited I had such a great opportunity with a brick.

You see, the brick is representative of a challenge from my adventure book. As odd as the instructions appear when read, the more fun that can be had ahead. How one interprets the assignment leads to the adventure itself. We started by naming our bricks. Mine was named Flash as a brick doesn’t move fast. Another was named Richard or Dick for short. Chase was named as well as Ash. Little Ash has a backstory. She could be short for Ashley or Asher making her gender neutral. Also bricks are represented in fireplaces as is ash. Brittani with an I was named in honor of Brittney Spears and the brick she is. Below is the first outing with our brick family as we set out for the day of fun adventures.

The girl gang is loaded with bricks today. A weapon? A stepping stone? An item to build with? For today it’s about the adventure and memories we create with our bricks. A strengthening of our relationships. Our travels start by car so the bricks are packed in a bucket with tissue paper for protection as well as flair. Off to eat brunch we go. Will the restaurant give us a high chair for our little brick family?

The bricks were involved in photos ops and shenanigans as the day progressed. From poses at the restaurant to a visit to an Alpaca farm. There was never a dull moment.

The bricks will find their final resting place in a pasture on our family farm while we head off to make more memories without the weight of the bricks. The giggles will be present for years to come as we pass by the bricks in their new spots on the farm.

As I close out this brick post i’ll now leave you this smiling Alpaca who posed for me on our field trip. This gem of an animal smiled bright with its stained teeth and grass-colored face. It was so funny to share this creative pose. So soft and fluffy yet such a hot mess up close.

What started out as a brick adventure ended up including an educational agri-tourism component allowing me to learn about Alpacas. It was a pretty cool experience and I won’t ruin the surprise by giving away the details of my Alpaca experience but I will share some photos for fun.

Because who doesn’t like a creature with hair as cool as this?

adventure, friendship

Biloxi, Mississippi

The stage is set for Biloxi, MS in spring of 2022. The first official road trip booked for the RV but who knows if it will actually be the first trip actually taken in it. Yes that is a mouthful but so true. Seeing that I am spontaneous I may opt for another quick getaway before I adventure to Biloxi.

No matter what trip I choose and when, I’m hoping for a positive experience but it could be a shit show/learning experience. The preparations have been in the works for some time, thus I can only hope we are really ready to tackle our new travel lifestyle with ease. If hope doesn’t work out then I will try to exercise patience and show grace as needed. 

Practice makes perfect, they say. Well we are practicing as much as we can before we extend our travels outside of 8 hours from home base. I’ll be holding my breath to avoid flat tires. I’ll be crossing my fingers that I don’t forget to pack a vital item. I’ll be positive in dealing with emotions of others in confined space. I’ll be thankful my dogs get to be roadies, but hoping they can hang like champs.

New cities.

New mode of transportation.

New adventures for me and my travel mates.

New memories to catalog in the photo reel.

Let the journey to the unknowns begin. Let the travel mates enjoy the experiences that are cast upon them. Let me live many days to enjoy the sunrises and sunsets with everything I can squeeze in between. 2022 travels are underway. Where will I go?  How many states will I park in overnight? How many states will I pass through? Which destinations will I choose to blog about? 

Cheers to adventuring.

adventure, friendship

Soul Refreshment

I read a comment recently on social media.  It went something like this: friendship can be soul refreshing. That’s it. Simple. Clever. Clear. Refreshing the soul can be as easy as 1-2-3. Take the time. Gather your friends. Make room on the calendar…

Smile. Giggle. Do silly things. Take pictures. Share life updates. Repeat. Why? It’s refreshment for the soul. A recharge to the doom and gloom of the ordinary day. It’s a new outlook on the day even if it’s for a short time. I enjoy my time with friends and my refreshment spills over into other areas of life. 

For me today it was about the insert in the Jenga box. The cardboard piece that looks like an electrical outlet. It really wasn’t part of the game but it turned into part of my game. A photo session of sorts. For those few moments, we giggled and embraced our silly side. Not for any particular reason. The outcome is one for my memory book.

Below is a glimpse of my candids. These people are real. The smiles are genuine. These are a few of my pals and I very much enjoying doing whatever with them when we can get time all together. Fit friends all separated by different careers, family lives and social circles yet our passion for fitness has bound us to true pals. 

Time and distance can separate us but our bond is strong. One of these gems is training for a marathon. One is building endurance for a triathlon. One is conquering workouts at home to avoid Covid blah. A couple are die hard morning girls hitting the gym in the wee hours when they don’t want to get out from under the covers. One is challenging herself with 75 hard. Special. Unique. Amazing. Women of power in many ways.

In the end we all cheer for each other. By text. Video chat. Email. In-person. These friends of mine are refreshment for my soul. No matter the day, they are some of the strong women I lean on.

This is yet another adventure with rainbow sugar socks and rainbow fancy feet however this time bubbles pixie duster joined in along with some others. For those of you read my last adventure post, you would know where the name aliases came from. If not it might be worth a look back. I’ll try to mention some names in my upcoming adventures, friends edition.