A year ago today, I wrote about all the things I planned to do in my 55th year. 55 things, in fact, all tied to the number 55. My inspiration came in large part from a National Institutes of Health report noting that men generally start dropping weight and, the report added, start falling apart at 55. If that’s the case, I thought, then I need to start working extra hard.
In my life as a guidebook writer, I frequently find myself returning from a scouting expedition and conducting a topopsy. That is, I get out the appropriate topographic map for where I’d been and try to figure where and how I got lost. It’s a helpful exercise. It sheds light on how I might help others avoid making the same mistake. And, to a lesser degree it turns out, helps me avoid making similar mistakes in the future.
Monday — never an easy time for the outdoors enthusiast. After a weekend of adventure, returning to the humdrum work-a-day world can make one melancholy. To help ease the transition, every Monday we feature a 90 Second Escape — essentially, a 90-second video of a place you’d probably rather be: a trail, a park, a greenway, a lake … anywhere as long as it’s not under a fluorescent bulb.
“I’m thinking about doing Georgia this year,” Alan said midway through our weekly 18-mile mountain bike ride at Umstead early yesterday morning. He said it wistfully, and punctuated it with a sigh.
The mention of Georgia a month into the new year was a trial balloon of sorts for Alan. Not so much to gauge my reaction; rather, for him to think out loud about what Georgia really meant.
While most of you are staring down Day 3 of your 2012 New Year’s resolutions, I find myself with less than five months to go on my annual birthday resolutions. Make that “first” annual birthday resolutions: When I turned 55 last May 11 I got to Googling and discovered that 55 is a somewhat pivital year for a male. Among other things, our muscles and organs begin to atrophy; we shrink, on average, 0.4 inches a year; we dehydrate more easily; our joints stiffen … . Suffice it to say that on May 11 of last year I didn’t feel I could wait seven months to set some goals, so I set 10 immediately. All with a theme of 55.