Sunday, April 15, 2007

LEAVING WINCHESTER, VA



After the longest time we have spent in one place since going on the road in June 2004, we are finally moving out tomorrow. The plan is to return to the Deep Creek Lake, MD, area to visit family, then leave the camper there and go out to Columbus, OH, to visit more family; return to Deep Creek, retrieve the camper, and mosey on up to New Hampshire and our summer work-camping gig.

That is, we will be moving out tomorrow if the weather is civil. There's a high wind warning, our camper is rocking now, and it's supposed to be worse tomorrow, from here all the way north and west where the red line is on the map above. Sustained at 35mph, gusting to 60, locally higher, especially in higher elevations (we'll see an elevation gain of about 2000 feet between here and there.) So we may be here another day.

I will miss Winchester. I have found wonderful country roads for running and biking. I have made some friends. I found, just a couple miles along my regular route, a gal about my age who runs with a dog. We ended up not being able to run together because she suffered a detached retina and was sidelined all winter. She's healing now and we actually got out on the road together one day last week. I will miss Sally.

I liked the Shenandoah Valley Running Club and its Winter Series races. That was a lot of fun, and I made my mark after the series was over, setting that age-group course record at the Rotary Club 5K. Blew into town for the winter, then blew out in the spring, who was that mittened woman???

Candy Hill Campground has been fun. Karl and Selena have been great to work with. Back in the fall, during my late Ironman training, Selena asked for a copy of my training schedule, and designed my whole work schedule, and therefore everyone else's as well, around my workouts. I didn't ask her. She asked me. Now, where in the world do you find that kind of concern for what's important to your workers outside of work?

And of course, there's their baby, Thomas, who's 9+ months old now and cute as a bug. Many of my work hours the last couple months have been spent caring for Thomas rather than working at the campground office and store -- couldn't get much more down my alley. I'm still a gal who functions quite naturally with one arm, the other one holding a baby on my hip. It's kind of like riding a bike, you never forget how.

I found a wonderful bike shop, Element Sports, where the mechanic disovered why my bike had never run as fast and smooth as I'd hoped, replaced the rusty (from the factory? apparently...) rear hub assembly, and zoom, my bike glided like I'd always thought it should. All the staff at the bike shop watched my IMFL progress all day on Ironmanlive.com, then printed out my final results and hung it on the store bulletin board for months. Also at the bike shop was a winter course on bike repair and maintenance, 3 sessions for $5 per session, that's FIVE DOLLARS a class. I learned a whole, whole lot.

I'm going to miss all these folks.

But I'm anxious to move on. We retired to travel. We need to do some part-time work to supplement our retirement income, and work-camping is the perfect solution. We work for a campground in exchange for a free campsite plus wages, and the work schedule is usually quite flexible.

I'm itchy to see a new place. I'm looking foward to New Hampshire. We can't wait to hike and backpack in the White Mountains, and kayak on the many local lakes. And I'm expecting to pick off 3 more states in my 50-state marathon quest. One of those "marathons" will be hidden within my first ultra.

I'm excited.

3 comments:

Vickie said...

I can see why you don't want to leave. What a great place it has been for you. And be glad you're not running Boston this year!

Favorite Apron said...

On to new adventures. It's no fun to pull a trailer in high winds. . . . we know.

My cousin is running Boston today. I'm glad it's not me fighting that wind.

ShirleyPerly said...

Sounds like a great retirement. My DH travels excessively right now for work and wants to just stay put when we retire. Hope to see you in NH!