Thursday, June 26, 2008

Every Cloud Has A SILVER Lining

On June 22nd Jeannie had a grand idea to hike to Silver Lake, up American Fork Canyon. I was game along with Lynn, and Buck. The weather was a bit warm so we got an early start at 8am. Jeannie & Lynn had been there before on horses, but had never hiked it a foot. Needless, to say we were in for a pretty good hike. The trail was good, with the exception of a couple of creeks we had to do a balancing act to get across. The area was absolutely beautiful and we could see Timp from the back side. Everything was bright green with several different species of wild flowers that almost looked fake. There was also tons, and I mean tons of large granite boulders, that sparkled in the sun light all the way to the top of the mountain. At about 8500 feet both Jeannie and I started to get a bit of a headache and fatigue. I soon realized it was altitude illness, something that has worried me all along in hiking Mt. Kilimanjaro. After a short rest the four of us kept hiking until we reached the top of the back side of Lone-Peak. What a breath taking sight Silver Lake was, with the snow coming right down to the edges of the water and the reflection of the mountain in the lake. It was a long, steep hike, but well worth it. That old saying every cloud has a silver lining was so true, as we all soon forgot how tired our legs were when we seen Silver Lake. The day was so fun, we seen a couple of moose, caught a couple fish, had a picnic, and tested my water filter. Thanks to Jeannine for suggesting the hike and Buck and Lynn for going with me. Hopefully, I will be more prepared for the 50 mile hike in Africa, thanks to every ones willingness to join the fun.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

A Sign From Above

Today, even though my legs and back were so stiff and sore from the 5K yesterday, Buck and I hiked to the Cindakut Mine, a six hour hike up Dry Mountain in Santaquin. At the start of the hike I was once again wondering, what I am thinking? However, I decided that once in Africa even if my entire body is sore and says, STOP, I have to keep going. So up the mountain I went. It was such a beautiful day and the wild flowers and the fragrant wild roses were just as beautiful. Each Spring the mountain wild flowers remind me so much of Dad, he loved the mountains and especially loved Indian Paintbrush's, Wild Larkspurs, and those little orange flowers. As I hiked I thought a lot of him, laughed at his little quotes, and cried because he wasn't here to encourage me in my journey. In preparing for my upcoming trip I've often wondered what he would think and would he be supportive of my decisions? Today, as I was hiking the abundance of wild flowers on each ridge seemed to be a sign from Dad. But, the real sign for me was the gracious eagle that soar above me for an hour. This eagle soared in the wind in the crystal blue sky, as if he were sky writing a message to me, a message of encouragement and good luck. I really think Dad would be tickled with my strength and courage so far, and in my mind I can hear him say, "that's is my daughter." Dad always loved bragging about his kids and grandkids to any one who would listen. I'm sure my humanitarian efforts would give him cause to brag. On the other hand, Donny, Steve, & Doug wonder why I want to go to Africa. Doug is convinced I have lost my marbles for climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro, while Donny is sure I'm going to be eaten by a lion! However, they all three agree that out of the six of us, I probably have the best chance of making it to the Roof of Africa, due to the fact that I inherited Dad's so called "strong bull-headedness." Really, I call it nothing more than a very deep determination, not knowing the meaning of NO, and an attitude of don't tell me I can't do it because I'll prove you wrong..............

What Was I Thinking

"What was I thinking," played over and over again in my mind during and after the Art City Day's 5K run in Springville on May 7, 2008. I have been trying so hard to get into the very best shape I can be in, to go to Africa, including running short distances. So with encouragement from my co-workers Tiff, myself and several other for MVH entered the Art City Fun Run. I really felt good about the race before hand, after all I had finished the Race For A Cure just a few weeks earlier in pretty good fashion. However, Saturday morning brought cold temperatures, rain and wind, not prime weather for runners or Tiff and I. As we prepared to go to the race we both thought we were totally nuts for running in the rain. The minute we got out of the car, I got a little chilled and when the gun fired it all went down hill. Only two blocks into the race I got a pain in my lungs and had to walk a block or so. I tried to regain my stamina and stride, but this poor old out of shape body surely didn't want to cooperate with my, your still young, you can do it mind. I felt so, so bad for Tiff, as I had to keep stopping to power walk. I told her several times to go ahead of me, but she wouldn't. I suppose all those years of "I'll stand by you through thick and thin," Motherly Love, has now turned around into Daughterly Love.
As we rounded the corner Springville High School was insight, as we pushed to the finish line in 39:88, not a great finish by no means, but a finish. I was so upset with my performance, my time, and most of all for letting Tiff down. However, as I think about it I have never in my life been athletic and never before ran any kind of race. So all in all I suppose it wasn't to bad and far better that a year ago, not to mention a total miracle from five years ago when the odds were against menot once, but twice not to even be here. I am not one to wallow in self pity or stew about my failures, but rather move on and just keep telling myself I can succeed. Tiff, is thinking about running the West 5K in July and wanted me to come, I will go, but I want her to run at her speed and my at my slower speed. One thing is for sure between now and then I will be doing a whole lot of running and endurance training. As far as this past race, sorry Tiff, thanks for running and sticking with me, we'll do better next time.