Sunday, June 19, 2016

Adventure Problems

There are several factors that hinder my efforts at being an Adventure Person:

1) I don't like the name "Adventure Person."  As you know, I've got Adventure Dog, Adventure Daughter, and Adventure Husband.  I don't want to be Adventure Mom--I'm not interested in emphasizing the mom-ness of my adventures.  I don't want to be Adventure Woman--that sounds like too much of an agenda.  But Adventure Person isn't exactly poetic.  Names mean a lot to me, so this is bothersome.  (Ok, this isn't really that big of a deal, but it has crossed my mind.)

2) I already wrote about Oomph, and my lack thereof.  I remember seeing one of those cute posters with a droopy looking puppy on it that said, "My get up and go got up and went."  That's how I feel a lot of the time.  The thought of changing out of work clothes and into exercise gear is exhausting.  But it doesn't seem like it should be.  It just is.  Also, it seems to take us 30 minutes to get out the door--where's my hat? What did I do with my shoes?  Sun screen? Bug spray?  Water bottles?  Did you print the map?  Where are my sun glasses?

3) Guilt.  I live in Maine, where beautiful weather is not uncommon exactly, but summer is most definitely special.  As are those winter days when the snow is glistening but the temps aren't too frigid and there's no wind.  When those days roll around, I get overwhelmed with the idea that I should be doing something to take advantage of them.  If I stay in and watch Netflix, I feel guilty, but the thought of how to perfectly capitalize on the gorgeous day is paralyzing.  Do I hike?  If so, which hike?  Should I do what I always do (Winslow Park) or try something new (but what if it turns out to be a crappy one)? And of course I've got more yard work to do than sunny summer days allow for, so instead of digging in (literally) and clearing the weedy flowerbed or fixing the pond or moving the rocks that need moving or pruning the bushes, I stare bewildered at the increasingly wild-looking yard and get nothing one.

4) Bugs.  I'm not afraid of bugs exactly.  I've caught my fair share of lighting bugs, and I can fight fiercely with the ants threaten my peace of mind each spring, but the biting bugs--mosquitos, black flies, deer flies, and the like--these are the bane of my outdoor adventure existence.  You know how some people rarely get bit and others are bug magnets?  I'm a bug magnet.  Or some folks get bit, sure, and it's mildly irritating, but they forget about it and that's that?  Not me.  A bite usually turns to welt, and I'm not keen on welts.

Fear of bug bites can literally deter me from an outing, or ruin my trip if I do muster the courage to go.

Today, for example, we're having one of those glorious, you-better-get-outside-and-do-something days, so once I managed to get over my inertia and settle on a hiking trail (with the help of Adventure Husband), I lathered on my homemade bug repellant and headed off.

Adventure Dog on the Trail
I didn't get many great photos--read on to find out why.
Within the first five minutes of the hike through a wooded area, I swatted two mosquitos off of Jon.  They weren't biting me, but seeing them go for him built up the first layer of stress.  Then one got me, and that was that.  I was on speed hike to get back to the car.  Forget admiring the foliage or the ways the sunlight streamed in mottled patches to the pine covered trail underfoot.  No.  Just Car Car Car Car Car.  Must get to car.  Retreat!

I am not proud of this.

I'm going to make a concerted effort this year to figure out how to minimize the mind games I play with the bugs.  I don't want to rely too heavily on chemicals, but I'm going to explore all the options.

Hopefully this summer's focus on adventuring will yield improvements in all of the areas that hinder my adventuring progress.  We'll see.  Whatever the case,  I'll try to write about it here.

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