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December 30, 202: A Day Outside

It’s not hard, spending the day outside, if you consider day to be dawn until dusk. That is, if at your place, like ours, you’re getting five or less hours of daylight.

We got up late because I couldn’t sleep. Lately, when I can’t sleep, I wake Pete and engage him in conversation. It actually is the best time to talk because neither of us is focused on what we’re doing next.

This, I know, is not a good habit and I’m working on breaking it. I figure getting exercise will put an end to this because I’ll sleep better. We’ll see.

Alys and Bootleg in Montana

It was seemingly dark at 9:45 a.m. because it was overcast. I was out cleaning the pen at sunrise – the sun (a bright pink-orange ball) popped over the horizon, then disappeared behind the low-lying cloud area. Not promising for those like me who were hoping for a sunny day, but well, it did herald a new day.

After breakfast, Pete went cross country skiing. I didn’t go with him. Instead, I took all three horses for a walk around the loop. They weren’t as energetic as yesterday, either because they’re now out of shape or because they were being careful on the ice. Tyra did slip a bit on the ice, and I had to coax her into continuing with the walk, which she did.

I had hoped to put the harness on Hrimmi and drive her – well, I’ll do this on another day. She has clearly indicated to me that this is what she most likes to do. She also hopes that soon, we’ll resume our painting lessons.

Pete returned; we ate lunch. Then we decided to go out and break open what we call Pete’s trail. He took his snowshoes and the dog. I took my new wide backcountry skis. I call them my old lady skis because they’re more wider, thus more slower and stable on the trail.

I had reservations in purchasing them. I have wanted for years to skate ski – it’s faster than classical skiing and you cover more ground, more quickly. And I knew that I most likely I would not be able to keep up with Pete on the backcountry skis.

I’d tried them out once – on the road before the plow went by. It was a slog, I kept getting mired in the soft snow. But I decided to give the new skis another chance. I am now glad I did. These skis already are a very wise investment.

I put them on after climbing over the berm at the base of Jim’s road. The ground was littered with branches and sticks, an afterthought of the latest windstorm. And the windblown snow was like concrete. I went up it, no problem, then down the adjacent hill, no problem.

I continued my trek, going across the trashed out bench trail, onto Siggi’s trail. The snow here was in places like concrete, and in other places soft. It remained this way as I headed downhill, through the woods, and in a bit joined up with Pete.

We headed in the direction of the road, and home. I felt good at the conclusion of our jaunt. I sacrificed speed for stability, and this was a good choice.

I’m going to find the time to do more skiing and bicycling.

Next: 359. 12/31/22: Goodbye 2022

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