Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Pity Party

What follows is basically a little pity party, so skip if you'd like.

Well, that was tough.  Tougher than I expected.

I actually expected to say goodbye to Steve in Aspen.  He's off on a three week plus rafting trip down the Colorado through the Grand Canyon.  I wasn't invited as I don't bring any necessary skills to a river trip.  The permit holder needed some one to row a raft and the trip leader, being a friend, knew that Steve would jump at the opportunity and that I would be supportive.  As I certainly am.

But I thought I was going to be supportive from a distance, not in the midst of it.  Steve prepared his gear while I was at work and having arranged for its transportation to the Crested Butte departure point, was goig to either ride his mountain bike or hike the 15 or so miles over to Crested Butte yesterday.  The weather, however, conspired against those plans, snowing all day on Monday, making thoughts of high country rides or hikes rather unrealistic.

So I rode to the rescue, offering to drive Steve the 100 miles via road to Crested Butte and drive home by myself. 

Upside?  We got to spend our anniversary together.  Downside?  I was thrust in the midst of the river preparations and felt all the more keenly my inability to participate.  I did leave instructions that, upon our meeting again, they are to spend the first 15-20 minutes complaining.  Only then can they regale me with their exploits.

This morning, we bid our goodbyes outside of Camp 4 Coffee in Crested Butte, they headed off to Flagstaff today, Lee's Ferry tomorrow and the river on Friday and I began my lonely trek back to Aspen, with only Seal to keep me company.  Seal, because in 1996, when I visited Aspen by myself, the rental car had a cd player and I had two of Seal's cds which I played non-stop.  Seal has become my Colorado mountain driving soundtrack. 

My spirits rose and fell, alternately buoyed by the beautiful scenery and my Colorado music and felled by thoughts of what I'm about to miss. 

And yet, as I neared Aspen, my perspective shifted without my even realizing it as thoughts of home, work, responsibilities, to do lists and Aspen fall recreational possibilities crowded out thoughts of a river trip which are quickly fading into a dreamlike state.

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