There is something to be said for getting away!
One of my goals for 2016 was to go on a bike trip with my honey. The purpose was to spend a few days getting away from home, doing something we both enjoy. Glad to report this goal has been met and thoroughly enjoyed.
I found us a rustic cabin in Pennsylvania that had Pine Creek in front of it and a bike trail behind it.
The drive was going great until we came across an unexpected road closed sign with a detour pointing to the left. We stared at the sign for a minute and realized it said we could continue on the road but there would be a “car detour only” ahead. We shrugged our shoulders and proceeded to drive on the original road. About 12 miles later, we approached the detour and realized we would be driving on the narrow, one lane bike path we planned on biking on later in the day.
The rest of the car ride was slow but hey – how often do you get to drive on a bike path?
We arrived around 1PM, unpacked the car and jumped on our bikes. We rode for 4 miles and then turned around and rode 4 miles back. The scenery was beautiful and the company was great (as always)! This short ride got our butts acclimated to our bike seats! Later in the afternoon we took a short 1.5-mile walk and then started dinner prep.
I love to cook and had planned a nice grilled salmon dinner with grilled veggies and a salad. Halfway thru cooking dinner, the skies opened up and the rain came down. It rained buckets of water and I had to bring everything into the cottage to finish cooking it there. I literally had to drain the water off the food before tossing it into a fry pan to finish cooking.
Despite the rain water, everything turned out wonderful and the meal was a success.
The next day we took off for a 16-mile ride on the bike path. This area of PA is gorgeous. The path winds along Pine Creek for 60 something miles. It is surrounded by mountains and wildlife. During our time there we saw deer, quail, fish, blue herons and lots of other birds. When we returned to our cottage, I sat on the double swing to relax. Within minutes I noticed 2 blue herons and decided to jump in the kayak to check out Pine Creek.
I put the kayak in the water, and thought, “HMMM is this deep enough for my little kayak?” The answer initially was a resounding “NO”. I sat down and could feel the rocks on the bottom thru the kayak.
I stood up and paused for a minute, then I pushed it out further and tried again. I am so glad I didn’t give up because once out on the creek, it was easy to see where the water was deeper and I enjoyed a relaxing paddle.
That afternoon we decided to check out one of the local PA State Parks. We jumped in the car with our trusty map in hand and headed out for a ride. We found the sign for the park and pulled into a small parking lot. I was really disappointed that the park was just a small area along a stream with a picnic table.
Rather than sulk, we figured we had time to find the other park we had seen on the map that was only a short distance away. We drove maybe 12 minutes and found a much larger, prettier park. We enjoyed a walk thru the area and found an ice cream stand on the way back!
When we got back to the cabin, my honey went for a short kayak ride and I cooked another yummy meal of Cajun tofu and vegetables over rice. (No rain water).
The next morning we rode another 8 miles and jumped in the car to drive home.
All in all, we had a great few days away. My honey got some bike riding in before her ride to support Diabetes Awareness that she completed at the end of that week. I got to cross off one of my 2016 goals – and I do love meeting my goals!
Did you notice the sentences I bolded and italicized above? Here they are again:
- The rest of the car ride was slow but hey – how often do you get to drive on a bike path?
- Despite the rain water, everything turned out wonderful and the meal was a success.
- I stood up and paused for a minute, then I pushed it out further and tried again. I am so glad I didn’t give up because once out on the creek, it was easy to see where the water was deeper and I enjoyed a relaxing paddle.
- Rather than sulk, we figured we had time to find the other park we had seen on the map that was only a short distance away. We drove maybe 12 minutes and found a much larger, prettier park. We enjoyed a walk thru the area and found an ice cream stand on the way back!
These were 4 moments where we could have let our circumstances get us down. We could have gotten all frustrated by the detour that extended our trip by slowing our speed to under 10 MPH. We could have let the rain water covering our food ruin our meal. I could have gotten all ticked off that the water level was so low and pulled the kayak out of the water. We could have stayed disappointed that the State Park was a bust and turned around and driven home.
At all 4 of the critical junctions – we chose happiness.
Attitude is everything and each of us are completely, 100% responsible for our own.
Surround yourself with people who are able to choose happiness and your happiness will grow. Surround yourself with people who can not roll with the punches and your happiness will suffer. Remember Debbie Downer and Ned from 2 Life- Preservers? Don’t be like Debbie and Ned.
When you find yourself at your next critical junction – when you feel your enthusiasm take a belly punch due to a small bump or even a large-sized pot hole in the middle of the road, remember you have a choice. You can choose to get derailed, to get all ticked off and angry or frustrated or disappointed. OR you can choose to find the positive, to outsmart the pothole. You can choose happiness.
It makes for a much smoother ride on this journey called life.
As an aside… This lovely get-away few days cost us a whooping $227.50. There really is something to be said for getting away. This is traveling in My Little Blue Kayak!