"Well then, I'm running away if you're going to be so mean."
"Ok," Mom said. "Let's get you packed."
We walked into my bedroom and pulled out a little suitcase. I decided I would need a change of panties, a sweater, and a pair of socks. "There! I'll show her. I'll be my own boss so I can walk across any floor I want, anytime I want," thought I.
"Call when you get to where you're going," Mom added as I walked out the front door in a huff. She had given me a dime. I can't imagine what she was thinking or how she kept from laughing out loud.
Before I got to the house next door, I stopped dead in my tracks. What was I doing? I had no money, no food, no place to spend the night and no one to help me if I got in trouble. (Moms are good for that kind of stuff.) Maybe I didn't have it so bad after all. I turned around slowly and walked in the front door, sulking mightily.
"Back so soon?"
"Yup, I changed my mind." That was it.
My first attempt at running away from home is etched on my mind as if it happened yesterday and not 54 years ago. Funny thing is, I'm still running away from home and I love it! Because now it means stepping out a front door and onto a trail, my heart set on "running away from home" and into coyote, quail, great blue herons, moose, rattlers, bobcats and egrets. I've run into this coyote several times just off the trail in Sycamore Grove Park...
Running into places where all I hear is my own footfall and measured breathing, birds and red tailed hawks crying overhead. Running and wandering trails in search of wild life has become as natural and as much anticipated a part of my life as eating and sleeping. My friend Gene Frieders captured this butterfly up near Ebbetts Pass on a hike to Duck Lake.
It is part of the reason I launched RW2010...because every day I get use my legs to move and discover new wild territory, I am grateful. Too many of our soldiers have come home unable to do the things I take for granted. Being a Road Warrior is just one opportunity to honor them and make sure they know we have not forgotten them, their service, their sacrifice.
|photo provided by Wounded Warrior Project|
Today, I was "riding away from home" and ran into Jim Ott, President of the Uncle Credit Union who was out for a 30 mile ride up the Calaveras Canyon. I told him about Road Warriors 2010 and next thing you know, he asked me to drop a packet of info by his office. He was willing to help spread the word about how moms, dads, kids and grandparents can all join in to show our support and respect for our military by making the decision to log 100 miles of fun...running away from home isn't such a bad idea after all.