It’s testing season at one of my jobs.
And it’s springtime at one of my other jobs. The job where I have to monitor kids on probation. (Hint: kids get crazy when the weather gets good…)
I’m tired. And stressed. And probably a little resentful of single parenting right now. For several reason…
I got zero miles of running in last week. Zero yoga. Zero strength training.
So as the Board was talking about running a mountain Sunday, I realized how desperately I needed mountains. Like, urgently.
And Rogue was finally back from that damn Antelope Canyon trip that made me all salty. And I realized how desperately I needed to be on a mountain with her. Like, immediately.
This is why, on Saturday, I skipped a Mountain Junkies race in favor of three hours on the world’s ugliest mountain with Rogue.
(Don’t tell the Gilberts.)
What North Mountain gives you in mileage and elevation, it makes up for in complete lack of beauty or scenery.
I think that picture pretty much sums up North Mountain. Even the trees are struggling to find joy and just giving up on life out there.
Still, it was helpful.
Because that bitch of a mountain will absolutely beat the stress right out of you.
But I was still kind of craving some decent mountain views and Rogue wasn’t falling for the post-North Mountain Challenge Loop Dragon’s Tooth “shake out” Hike bullshit that Endong manipulated me into last weekend. Because she’s been up there. And she occasionally (but super rarely) makes better choices than I do. (I’m way more susceptible to people pleasing and peer pressure than she is.)
So on Sunday I accepted an invitation to gorgeous views on a bitchy mountain in an undisclosed location.
Rogue didn’t go because she places work responsibilities above her crew. Seriously. I know. And I don’t know where the hell Endong was. Maybe out hunting the Morel mushrooms that I just found out actually grow in Virginia? Right? I know. I thought they were just a Hoosier thing, too.
So, I was already missing a significant portion of my crew.
But still. The views.
I was forced to wear green. Because it was St. Patrick’s Day. And we were going to Christmas Mountain. Shit. I mean, an undisclosed location.
I wore the only green shirt I have. Which I got from GJB that morning. Because he picked up my race packet…
Yeah. That’s from the Mountain Junkies race I didn’t run Saturday.
(Don’t tell the Gilberts.)
Anyway. I’ve whined about this particular mountain before.
So, I’mma go ahead and whine about it again.
Because one mile straight-the-hell-nose-touching-the-ground-in-front-of-you up. And GJB couldn’t even be bothered to maintain his damn “trail”? They make leaf blowers for a reason, man!
And yes, I used my parents’ pansy sticks to claw my way up the damn mountain. While Body Pump Mastress and Finn’s Dad just sauntered up hands-free like they were traversing gentle rolling hills.
But the rest of us struggled like normal humans. GJB almost puked. He kept blaming it on avocados.
We also smuggled the Tiny Brazilian up there which led to debate on whether or not she was the first foreigner to ever make that climb. Because no one really knows if Canadians count as foreigners. (We do know, however, that the word Canadian makes an excellent substitute for a questionable word that we’re not allowed to say that is in all of the rap songs we love to listen to Endong and GJB perform. To guitar accompaniment. Really. It sounds awful, but you can almost dance to it. If dancing’s not your thing.)
And then, the views.
Yeah. Those views. The laughter with these awesome people. The exceptional workout. Just sitting out on a rockface in the middle of nowhere looking out over what I assume is a few different counties.
That is how you’re supposed to spend a Sunday.
When you get up there, GJB likes to start pointing out landmarks on the other side of the county like my grandfather used to do. See that tiny brown dot in that group of trees just below that mountain peak? That’s where TMFJ’s grandparents used to live.
Just nod and act interested when he does that shit.
We managed to trick- I mean, talk Double X and the Tiny Brazilian into climbing down into Endong’s Mountain Birthing Crevice.
Mumbling something about avocados again.
But if you thought climbing up the mountain was bad, try avoiding pulling a groin muscle or ripping open the ass of your pants as you back slide your way back down.
It’s the only time in my life I’ve ever heard the Tiny Brazilian go for a solid 15 minutes without making a single sound.
And then you get to the bottom and you just look up in awe at how you just spent your afternoon.
And then you hike out past this tree and you just look up in awe at how much it resembles a…
And this is just for GJB who threatened to crop me out of the group pics after Body Pump Mastress said I was the highlight of the pics. He can get pretty princess sometimes. (And then he mumbled something about avocados…)
So to sum up. I’m on Loop 9 of the North Mountain Challenge. While Drinkwater passed the halfway mark with loops 24, 25, and 26 on Saturday. Three loops on that gawdawful mountain. I’m not sure that’s sane. And Christmas Mountain with the crew is the only appropriate way to spend St. Patrick’s Day. All you other crazies that spent the day drinking…Psht. I mean. We did that. But we did it on a damn mountain.