I can’t remember the last time I went more than 24 hours without a cell phone. No screens, just waves and stars. No texting, just talking around the campfire. No emails, no work, just rest–pure rest.
Two of my best friends from my San Diego spin days decided it was time we all–The Tripod–reunite at a scenic camping spot somewhat-halfway between our two cities.
We booked our Jalama beach camping site in January, dreaming of beach days and campfire nights away from the city lights. We committed to no electronics (save cameras) and no work talk–it was time to reconnect and give our bones the deep rest they needed. Even while writing this two weeks later, I can nearly feel the longing deep down in my marrow to return to that restful space in time.
How quickly the weekend passed by! Unplugging, even for just a short moment, refreshes in a way nothing else can.
Read on for our photo-journal from the trip >>
I am not a city person. I grew up in the shadow of the Rocky Mountains, attended a small college by the beaches of San Diego. I craved nature, not concrete.
And then I moved to San Francisco.
While growing up, we are instructed to learn about ourselves and share that with others. We show-and-tell what brings us joy: our favorite food, places we want to explore, what we like to do on the weekends and if we’d rather watch a movie or read a book. Introvert? Extrovert? Science and math, or creative. Messy, clean.
Either or, this, that.
We fit ourselves into neat categories– it makes life easier. Humans, the cognitive misers we are, dislike wasting energy on decision-making. A strong sense of self takes away much of the need to decide. We like what we like, don’t what we don’t.
But there’s a danger in leaving the unexplored, well, unexplored forever. Of sticking with chocolate and never again tasting the vanilla.
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Last weekend I learned it was possible to make peace with San Diego.
I learned it was possible to add another home to my list of homes, three of the most beautiful places in America (I’d like to think, at least). I learned it was possible to drop the leftover remains of heartache away and inhale the salty air with a certain lightness I haven’t felt in a while.
Make peace? What?
Well truth be told, I didn’t know what it would be like to finally venture back to SD after I moved away. This past weekend back was my first real return, and though I still remain close to my best friends there, the place itself used to stir up all the feels:
Would I miss it too bad? Would I have any twinge of regret over what I left behind? Would it still feel the same?
Last Sunday I boarded a plane bound for Mexico.
After being sick for over a month, bedridden for almost a week, and plain sick and tired of Karl the Fog, there was nothing I wanted more than this: quality time in the sunshine, tropical heat, warm ocean water and oppressive humidity with new friends.
So I dove in.
Cliché I know, but there are few better feelings than crossing the finish line– the swell of emotions, the excitement, relief. Tears (naturally) for me, a cold beer (Anchor Steam) presented to me by my sister.
Sweat dried in salty rivers around my face, white Lulu tank soaked through. Cold, but not, and buzzing with adrenalin, endorphin-charged high. Stoke level 100.
Post-shower (me) with my two faves. What champs! They ran 26.2 miles & look amazing.
A smile unfading despite feeling the sudden tightness in my quads, twinge in my knees, the throb in my Achilles.
This year’s SF Half Marathon coincidentally fell on the same weekend as my apartment move. Packing and shuffling boxes combined with race prep and a friend’s visit to run with us meant struggling with the balancing act– but somehow we made it all happen.
(I’m not kidding when I say I get by with
a little a shoot ton of help from my friends.)