Monday, January 4, 2010

Knowing Your Limits

Pamela Tracy here. This New Year's had to be one of the most interesting ones I've had in a long time. See, I'm in Arizona, Phoenix actually, the land of NO SNOW. Last Thursday, we packed up and went camping. So, Thursday night, six of us (my four-year-old fell asleep at 9 or there'd have been seven) stood around a campfire and blue whistles and set off noise makers. What fun! Friday and Saturday were spent riding in what my son called "The middle of nowhere." Since it was a holiday weekend, there were lots of people in the middle of nowhere. Friday, we started for a place called the Coke Ovens. Don found it on a map. Everyone was excited. Apparently, back in the 1800's, coal was produced in the middle of the desert in man-made ovens which are now a historic landmark that only the 'brave' or 'lucky' can get to. Everyone said the route to the Coke Ovens was rough. Rough is one of those words that can change meanings depending on the speaker. But, still, the Off Road magazine my husband had said rough to extreme. Okay, rough is a changable word but extreme is not. My first hint was Friday when we got to a tough spot and had to wait while a Jeep was wenched to safety. We got halfway to the Coke Ovens and decided we'd started too late and we'd come back tomorrow. Next day, Saturday, off we go again. And, strangely enough, we didn't start any earlier. We get to the same tough spot and there's a line. See, you can't just drive down or up this rocky place. It's turn left, turn right, go up at an impossible angle, fall to earth, pray, bump your way up or down. This day, after the line, we went (I got off, Mikey and I climbed down the tough area on foot, and hubby rode my quad down. We stopped at the bottom to regroup and a few quads started up. That's when our first delay happened. One of the quads tipped and landed on the man riding it. Everyone ran to help. Next, we stopped because at the next tough area, one we hadn't made it to the day before, only had enough space for one at a time. We were delayed as seven jeeps, a few side by sides, and a few quads came down. We were in the second group to go up. The first group almost lost a quad. Finally, our turn. I get halfway up, and at the same place where the first group almost lost a quad, I lost my grip. The quad started to fall back on me. I'm not sure what stopped it and made it fall forward again, but somehow it righted. I tried again and this time, I kid you not, my feet were in the air and it's coming back on me. I heard my husband scream, and I let go. The bike, luckily, fell away from me. I should have turned around, but I didn't. I kept going. how does this tale end. There comes a time when you have to know your limits. For me, it was uphill grade, hands refusing to hit the gas, and saying to my husband: I'm done. Another guy took over my bike, I got on the back of my brother-in-law's bike, and for much of the trip I kept my eyes closed and prayed. Again, darkness took over and we came within 30 minutes of the Coke Ovens and for safety purposes, turned back. We're already planning our next trip. My husband's job? Find a different route to the Coke Ovens. So, how was your New Year's.

7 comments:

  1. Here is a great Parker Palmer paraphrased quote about honoring our limitations, "If we are to live our lives fully and well, we must...honor our limitations and trust our gifts. We must take the no of the way that closes and find the guidance it has to offer - and take the yes of the way that opens and respond with the yes of our lives."
    Just reading this quote makes me treat myself more gently! Peace, Julie

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  2. Thanks, Julie, that's a great quote, and certainly fits my weekend.

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  3. WOW Pam! You certainly had quite a weekend, girl : D Much more exciting than ours lol! We sat around and watched movies. That's it! I worked on my counted cross stitch, mom knit, Alicia ummmm hooped(not sure the technical term!). It was nice. We went to the theaters and saw Nine on New Years Eve. Then 2 movies at home while enjoying Chinese and Mexican food. We then watched 5 or 6 movies on Friday! Lol! And another Saturday night....we were movie pooped!
    Talk to you later,
    Hannah

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  4. Pamela, you amaze me! I'm a chicken.

    I say for the next attempt, you rent a helicopter. :)

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  5. Hannah,
    I do stamped cross stitch because I don't have the patience for counted. And, I love going to the movies.

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  6. Missy,
    Helicopter? LOL. I don't fly. I'm terrified of planes. I was on the train for almost twenty hours getting to San Francisco.

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  7. Lol Pam! I started with printed because mom said it was...guess what!? It was! : )

    You know what they always say, mother's know best....
    Hannah

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