1 day to go!
I woke up this morning and made my usual pot of coffee. While it was brewing I reached into the cabinet to retrieve my favorite coffee cup. As I pulled the cup out of the cabinet, I noticed a long crack in the side. Between Chris and myself, we have way to many mugs in the cabinet. He’s predominantly a Starbucks mug collector. Not unlike others, I collect coffee cups from different journeys I’ve been on.
I have the cup I picked up right before completing my first half Ironman. I have a cup I picked up from a Piper Cub fly-in I attended with my good friend Jeff Coffman. My cupboard is lined with several such memories. And then there was my favorite, may it rest in almost pieces. It’s a tacky little mug with a picture of a bull elk on both sides as well as pictures of pine cones circling the rim. But it’s where I picked it up I remember so fondly.
I picked it up in Yosemite, the day before a small group of friends started our hike of Half Dome. Rather fitting in its cliché. It breaks the morning before I leave for my most grand adventure to date, as if to say, “out with the old, and in with the new.”
The last week has been somewhat of a whirlwind. It’s been awash in tying up loose ends, and getting things I normally deal with set on autopilot for the next 5 months. I’ve had dinners and lunches with several friends to catch up and at the same time say farewell for now. Saturday was the culmination of such with a party put on at a local bar I tend to frequent. It was truly great to see everyone. Thank you for coming out if you read this.
Today, I took an extra long shower. It will be a bit before I get to experience such a luxury again. This evening is the last hoorah. My closest friends are putting on an intimate dinner that I’m sure will be full of laughs, cocktails (just one for me) and a fair amount of waterworks (i.e. Don’t mind me, I have something in my eye…). I’m sure my friend Keith has outdone himself. He has always been one to put on grand affairs. He keeps joking he want to have a squadron of B-52s do a fly over….
The last months have flown by! I can’t believe it’s tomorrow!! If you’re planning a journey of 2,663 miles does, does Laozi’s Proverb, “a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step”, still apply? Of course, it does. People have often asked how I able to complete some of the endurance events I’ve undertaken. In a typical trite, “James” response, I say, “Well, I put one foot in front of the other, over and over, until I finish.” I often receive a scornful look with such a response, but it’s the truth! It’s not magic.
The answer they are looking for is more lengthy and complicated. While I am not going to provide the lengthy and complicated answer today. I will say, every single endurance event I have ever participated in has been as much an exercise in mental fortitude, as it has in physical preparedness.
If the mind is willing, the body will follow.
The next post you read from me will be written from the Pacific Crest Trail! See ya’ll on the flip side!