Moving On

There are several moments in life where you must decide to move on or grow stagnant. I think it is a rare person who is ok with not moving or growing or dreaming. Time to Leave Now describes 5 reasons and times you must move in your life and not only have I moved for all these reasons in my life (more than once), but I have moved for all these reasons in the last 12 months:

  1. To get away from what you know
  2. To find new experiences
  3. To chase love
  4. To escape that love
  5. To begin all over again

When I was twenty a life changing event was thrust upon me (to be truthful it was the second one in my short life, I just didn’t recognize the first one until years and years later). While I was indignant at the time, in hindsight (the perfect vision that it is) it was the best thing that could have happened to me.

The event in my twenties not only fulfilled my desires at the time, but made me the person I am today. While I’m not overly forceful in life, I do know what I want and I usually know how to go get it. I take responsibilities for my actions and reactions, and do my best to be a better person.

My current journey has sent me down a path I never saw even a few years back. I was neither happy nor unhappy. Some people call this content, but that is (in my opinion) stagnant. There are people who recognize stagnation at the time it occurs and go and do something about it, but there are more of us (myself included) that ruminate, think about it, over think it and then realize the time has come to move on.

I either missed the signs that I was to take the other fork in the road or maybe I was content in my sedentary lifestyle. To this day I’m not sure of the answer, but what I am sure of is that if I made the decision to move on sooner a few very good things would not have occurred for me.

I don’t know if it is the Blue Moon or because it is the eve of another round of travels that I sit and reflect on the events of the last few years, but the past keeps poking around inside my head. I found a list I wrote a couple years back as I was parting with my past to bring about what I wanted the future to be. It contains descriptions and the qualities of people I want in my world.

It didn’t matter which area of my life I wanted to change, two things are ever present in each section: Biking and traveling and flying — I guess that’s really three. You may have noticed that I write about those three elements a lot. A friend of mine told me the other night that it was silly, but it was important for her partner to be a biker. I laughed. I didn’t explain why I laughed, but if you look at my writing, my desires, my lists, you will see a common theme: biking (well flying and traveling too).

When I parted ways with my past, one big reason — one important reason to me — was that my partner was not a biker. It is important to me. Several factors are, but number one on the list, okay maybe second, she must be as into biking as I am. I want to be outside and moving and experiencing life on a bike with someone.

I identified with the 5 times in your life you must move on, but the tricky part is not only knowing when to move on, but what you want to move towards. I have notes and lists and ideas of what my life should be, could be, will be. In the last year I moved to get away from what I knew. I moved to a new place half way across the country in order to find new experiences. I was extremely uncomfortable, as I could count on one hand how many people I knew in this area. It was to chase love, even though I don’t know who that is; just instinctually knowing she is where I moved to, while also moving to escape the love that I thought I had for a long time. Most importantly, I moved to begin all over again. I needed to move to find me and return to who I was, which may seem like an oxymoron, but to step back in a place where I knew relatively no one, was the only way to move on.

It was a painful, hard, journey to move on, but I am happier and more fulfilled by doing so.

Road Trip

There are few things that are wonderful from beginning to end. A road trip is one of those things.  It starts with going through the express lane in the airport and being upgraded to first class.  It’s the quick walk through a non-busy airport to a nice auto with a sunroof. The feel of the cool 72 degree air and the sun beaming down from the clear blue cloudless sky.

A time for thinking of nothing and everything. A time for being.

Sitting by the ocean, meditating to the soft music and feeling the possibilities of life open before you. The sense that for this brief wonderful warm moment everything is perfect.

Pacific OceanIt is with the rhythmic surf and the call of seagulls,the distant lifeguard whistle that I find that all is as it should be. I am happy, I am learning to return to my roots, my desires, and my dreams. I had thought I was forever lost in a sense of physical and mental fog, things were just there beyond my reach.

A couple weeks backs a small slight change made all the difference. This difference led me to change an existing routine to include a small road trip. You could say I took the scenic route to the office. Everything was beautiful and lined up in better ways than I could imagine. I followed the surf side road to the Pacific Ocean, stopping briefly in a small town to pick up local fare at a cafe tucked in amongst dark wood beam shops and a active farmers market.

There was no schedule, no time table, no one waiting for me. It was time to read and write whatever came to mind. When my imagination could think no more and my body craved the sun cool breeze, I packed up my few belongings and headed further south and west. The Pacific ocean came into view just over a small hill and I followed the parallel road north. It didn’t take long to find a public access where I could sit and watch the waves.  I walked along a bit until I found the perfect set of rocks that bordered the cool damp sand where I could meditate.

It was my first outdoor meditation and it was beautiful. Soft music playing, rolling waves, sun and ocean breeze, a perfect combination for relaxation.

Everything seemed brighter, calmer, and happier when I opened my eyes and I continued to linger watching the boats and surfers in the water. I embraced this feeling and tucked it away to remember during the long week ahead. I wanted to keep this new found sense of peace and calmness that had eluded me for so long.Pelican

I decided on a whim to follow the shore line north and made a small trip into Hollywood — see that is the best thing about road trips with no deadline or true itinerary. You get to make it up and go where ever your desire takes you. I wanted to make one last stop before heading to the hotel.

Hollywood, was a perfect midpoint stop. I swung through the hills to a cache location that sounded nice. (

The little hut that sat there boasted of long ago artists that lived in the gated section beyond. I stood and took in the view and the odd shaped too close houses. I wonder what it was like for the artists back then. Did they enjoy what they did? Were they appreciated for their talent? Did they like living in these small homes built in the hills of Hollywood?

I drove slowly out of the hills as my impromptu road trip came to an end. I still ponder the little houses tucked away in the hills of Hollywood. It makes me smile and wonder: where, when will the next road trip be.

Little Things in Life

I wonder if anyone can be happy all the time. Lately, I wonder if people can be happy most of the time. I think I may have lost that somewhere along the way.

I am happy — for this brief spit of time.

It’s not the big things, work or relationships. Today it was all about the small things.

Leaving work a little early: traffic was almost non-existent, even around the crowded LAX airport.

Checking into a nice hotel: front desk upgraded me to the concierge floor with access to the lounge.

West Side room: over looks the runway to the airport where I could watch planes landing and taking off.

A beautiful pink and gray sunset: my mother would have loved it, she never missed a sunset.

The lights on the runways come to life as the sun hides behind the gray fluffy clouds.

Planes large and small drop into view sporadically mere moments before touching down. Smoke billows behind the plane as rubber meets tarmac and air brakes are applied.

On the other side of the field, white lights guide the metallic colorful planes toward me. One then two start the queue. Slowly joined by more and then they turn facing away. The pilot throttles forward, the engines come to life and mere seconds later the plane roars down the runway before it separates itself from earth.

As I watch the dark field changes. Red lights, green lights, white lights twinkle on the ground. I find that for one perfect peaceful moment I am happy.

It is the little things from checking in, to watching planes in my own space, to a memory of sunset sent from mom that make me happy.

It is a rare thing I feel lately and one I would love to welcome back into my life on a more permanent long term basis. I enjoy the little things that bring me peace and a smile to my face.

I know tomorrow will bring me a few more moments of happiness because I will get to sleep in slightly before heading to the airport I now watch and board a plane which will return me to my home.

I will be greeted by a calico who will curl up in my lap as I sit on the couch to read. If the weather turns nice I will even find time to fly along a road in the country on my bike.

Yes, it is the little things that make me happy.


The Catalyst Merry Go-Round

A catalyst is a substance that increases the rate of a chemical reaction without itself undergoing any permanent chemical change.

Friends, they are a funny thing. I have moved more times in the last twenty five years than most people do in a life time. I enjoy it, the changes.

Someone asked me once what I am running from, but i think the question is, what am I looking for?
Everywhere I go, I make a few friends. My family would not call me the social butterfly, but I make a few core friends — for the time I am there.

I’ve bumped into a couple of “friends” from my past and they tell me that I was that one that lost contact with them. I beg to differ, not to be stubborn, but it takes two to tango. I have managed to find a core group of friends that I have never lost contact with, no matter the time or the place or the distance. I can count on one hand how many people that includes.

One thing I have noticed over the years, is that my idea of friendship is very different than others. While I’m in the same physical space as they are, we hang from time to time — never enough for me. Unlike most people I thrive when I’m in the company of others. My mom once told a friend of hers who commented on all my toys I wasn’t playing with, that if she gave me a human I would be happier. I rarely like being alone, not that I mind it, but my preference would be to be around people more often than not.

I have recently moved — again — and currently working on the long distance friendships. As I get setup in my new life, I hear from them how much I am missed, they reminisce on the times we spent together, they wish I was still there. While I am flattered and I feel loved and missed, my perception is quite different than that. It’s not that I don’t miss them, the game nights, the time spent watching them playing softball, or the just hanging out and talking. I miss those times tremendously — I miss them a lot.

It’s just I see those past events as rare occurances. It was not like we hung out every night or even every weekend. Usually the get togethers where we had fun were on the weekends. It was rarer that we’d do anything during the week when I needed the attention the most.

It seems to me from these hundreds of miles between us, that they get together even more now that I am gone than when I was there. I remember commenting on this one of my core friends and they said that was because I was the catalyst. I was the one that brought everyone together to mix and mingle in the beginning and even though they didn’t meet up as much as I liked while I was there, they now meet more because of me. I’m missed after the fact.

The catalyst: a person or thing that precipitates an event.

I’d like to stop being the catalyst and just have more people in my life to fill my time. I think a large loud family would have suited me well. I like the noise, some mellow drama and angst, the warmth, the support, the love. Mom,as usual, was right. I’d rather have a human to to play with than a toy any day.



Inspiration Trail

Inspiration Trail

Inspiration is a funny thing. You never know when it is going to hit you or from where it will come or who. It seems like inspiration, like attachments, form mostly without rhyme or reasons.

My love of biking goes all the way back to my childhood. I was about eight when I was racing up and down the street and around the block. It was the late seventies when kids could be kids and parents didn’t micromanage your every movement.

I declared one day, as I was timing an imaginary race (like Greg LeMond) around the block that I would be the first woman bike racer. The dream was quickly quashed by a scoffing adult and it took a while, but my love of biking and going fast never died, even though the hopes of being a bike racer did. No matter where I went, no matter what I did, no matter who was in my life, biking was a part of me. It was a way to relax, to summon my inner muse and creative stories to write about. It was me.

Greg LeMond inspired me to ride and and Jimmy! kept me consistent. He was a neighbor, like seven feet tall. No, really he was. I stood just over 3 feet – well ok maybe a little more than that.

Anyway, whenever I talked myself out of riding for the day he would come along and poke and prod until without knowing it we were soaring up and down the hills of Ohio. Don’t get me wrong this was not a one way street. I was equally responsible for prodding him onto a bike when he was less than motivated. We made the perfect team, Jimmy! easily out pedaling me 3 to 1 and me racing to catch him. We did manage to keep fairly consistent.

As time and things have a habit of doing, I moved away and lost my biking buddy. I managed to keep consistent for a few years, but ultimately without a biking buddy my consistency slipped. Before I knew it I found myself not biking. I have lots of “reasons”. I was too busy, I had no one to ride with, I didn’t have a safe place to ride. Truth is, I lost my love of biking. It did not bring me the joy I remember. I stopped riding for a long long time. Sometimes your love of something is not enough.

One day, this changed. Someone inspired me to ride. It wasn’t intentional. I’m sure, even to this day, she has no idea that she inspired me to get on my bike and ride again. It happened in such a benign odd way that it took me a while to realize that she had inspired me, had lit a fire of my love for biking.

It started with her signing off from work that she was going for a ride. I remember wishing that I could join her. She sounded ecstatic (like I used to) by getting outside and flying as fast as you could.

Due to our locations (a few thousand miles separated us) we could not ride together. She would post about the route, distance and speed. It was that last bit that got me to thinking, is that good? Could I go ten miles in under forty minutes? That sounded fast. Was it fast?

The chatting of biking and techniques and the posts started to ignite the cooling embers of my long dormant passion.

It was the post of going ten miles in thirty five minutes that did it. I walked out to the garage, dusted off my bike, filled the tires and set off to see. Was I as fast as I remember? I bet anything I could beat that, even after not riding for the last couple three years.

There is nothing like the wind rushing over you, the sun on your face and arms, the blur of trees and concrete that fuel one’s desire to push harder, to breath more efficiently, to be better, to let go.


I found myself competing with the miles and times she was posting. It gave me a goal, an obtainable goal. It took me a few rides, but not only did I match the initial goal as she got better, but I exceed it. Each ride made me stronger and more determined.

While I have not had the luck to find another riding buddy, I have managed to keep my love of biking alive and fairly consistent. Unfortunately, I wish I could say the same for her. While we have drifted apart over the last couple of years, I was saddened to learn that it had been months since she had rode. Injuries aside, the person who inspired me to ride again has lost her passion for the sport. We talked about riding briefly, but like a smile that doesn’t reflect in your eyes, the enthusiasm and joy that motivated me was missing . I wish I could return the favor. I hope that she will be inspired by someone or something that will make her remember the joy of riding. The feeling of the sun the rush of the air the friendly solitude of it all.

I will forever be grateful for the inspirations that brought biking to me time and again.

May the wind be at your back and all the hills be down.