Guess what I did on Black Friday. What else would the author of a running blog do but go for a run? I spent the weekend at my in-laws' ranch in West Texas and was thankful that I didn’t have to brave the crowds, violent mobs, and pepper spray all for a 10% discount on an X-Box. No mall for me.
Instead, I went running up a dirt road in one of the least populated counties in our country; Hudspeth, TX, population density: less than one person per sq mile. Deputy Sheriff: Steven Seagal.
As I ran, I had plenty of time to ponder all that I was thankful for, like the company of my 6 pack of dogs who were running with me.
I was also grateful for the wonderful dinner with family that I enjoyed the day before, and for the light drizzle that dampened my shirt and hat. I had heard that some shoppers in the city waited 4 hours in the rain for stores to open. One could have completed a full marathon in that time.
Why do we make Christmas so stressful? It seems to sneak up on us every year. How long have we known about that Dec 25th deadline? Only around 2000 years. You’d think we would plan a little better, but I suppose it is human nature to procrastinate. Well, I vow to take off the pressure this year. If I’m on your shopping list, don’t worry about getting me anything and If you are on mine...well... um...I feel sorry for you.
My wife, Cara, and her dad made me an early Christmas gift while we were relaxing at the ranch. They crafted a wonderful pair of sandals out of a 1953 car tire. (Think Tarahumara Indians from the book, Born to Run.) I’m thankful for their thoughtfulness and even for the antique mud that still adorns the soles. I’m wearing them while sitting in front of a very warm wood stove as I write this.
We just returned from riding horses around the ranch, which was just one of four modes of travel that I enjoyed today. This morning started with a mountain bike ride, and then a walk with the family. After that, I drove the tractor around a bit and then ended the day on a horse.
One of the neighbor ranchers told us about a mountain lion that has been seen around these parts. He says that they come down from the mountain this time of year. Even in the city of El Paso, residents have been reporting wildcats in their yards. On yesterday’s walk, one of our dogs discovered a tasty treat. He found a javalina leg that I suspect may have been killed and eaten by a lion. Although, I think a pack of coyote could also bring down a small peccary.
|Organ Mts New Mexico|
I hope you will also have the opportunity to slow down and relax during this busy season. If you are looking for something better to do instead of shopping, try a leisurely walk or run. I recently discovered a new trail just over the state line in New Mexico.
|Sierra Vista Trail|
The Sierra Vista Trail is four miles East on NM 404 (off of I10) and has excellent views of the Organ Mountains. You can actually run or hike the entire 25 mile route all the way to Las Cruces. The northern trail head is on Soledad Canyon Rd. (Read post Soledad Canyon.) Eventually, I will try to run the whole way.
See you on the trail.