Saturday, August 18, 2018

Rambling on the Max Trail

Go Take A Hike!

The Mr. and I started our Saturday with a hike on what we fondly call, "The Max Trail." It's actually the Mountains to Sea trail along the Blue Ridge Parkway. We call it the Max Trail after our sweet schnauzer who was a part of our family for 13 years. Max loved to hike and this was his favorite section. He would run along the trail trying to pick up every stick he came across and carry them along with him. The only problem was there was stick after stick after stick. So many...and he couldn't carry them all! Anyway, my thoughts rambled along with my feet as we hiked today. If you want to ramble along with me, keep reading. You'll find out my thoughts and, perhaps, get a little inspiration along the way, as well. 

Today's hike would be considered more of a walk to this guy. He loves to hike and can go for hours. I prefer a more leisurely pace and kept stopping to take photos along the way. That is, until my camera told me that my card was filled. Also, my camera battery needed recharged. My camera battery and my hiking legs seem to have similar issues! One hour in tired me out. Recharging the camera battery is much simpler than recharging my legs. 

I love finding the beauty in small things along the trail. Like this mushroom. Love the frilled edges! Makes me think of Saturday mornings long ago when my Mom and I liked to watch "The Smurfs" cartoon together. Wonder what Papa Smurf would think of this for a house?

Oh, how I love to see shelf lichens on a log. Sometimes, they are so big a small animal could sit on them. But these are much smaller and quite plentiful. Max would have enjoyed walking out on this log to survey the woods all around. He thought he was the four pawed"King of the Forest!" We did see two dogs on the trail today, hiking along with their owners . The smaller dog of the two, who is  named Jack and is some type of terrier mix, decided he didn't like the Mr. and refused to walk past him. His owner had to pick him up and carry him forward. Silly dog, not to like the Mr. who has never met a dog or cat he didn't like. Perhaps Jack's bark is worse than his bite? Luckily, we didn't find out!

I handed over the camera to the Mr. to take this artistic shot. Seems like you can see forever, doesn't it? This is a huge tree. Kind of like the "Sacred Tree" we have in our woods that blew down last Fall when hurricane strength winds blew through during a storm. We were told the tree was sacred by a tree trimmer of Cherokee heritage who explained that sacred trees are ones that have been hit by lightening and survived. Our tree had a great lightening mark down the side. So, the lightening didn't destroy the tree, but weak roots did. It pays to have strong roots, doesn't it?!

At one point along the trail we could have chosen to either go up the mountain, down the mountain, or keep hiking on level trail. Guess which one I chose? Part of the appeal of this trail is that it is pretty much level with just the right amount of rockiness to make it interesting and yet not too taxing. Which is pretty much how I like life to be. Life on an even keel with just enough excitement to keep it interesting, but nothing too rocky thrown in, is the perfect mix for me. But life, like most trails, is not built this way. 

Right before our turn around point, two goddesses went running by. I remarked to the Mr. that I could look like them if I really wanted to. You know what I mean. Long flowing hair, perfectly toned and tanned bodies without an ounce of fat showing in their stylish running outfits. Well, I can dream, right? Makes me realize that I should have appreciated my body more when I was in my twenties. Instead,  I was filled with all sorts of negative body image issues. Thinking that I should look a certain way, more like Farrah Fawcett, instead of being happy with how I looked then. Come to think of it, I should appreciate my 50's body of today. After all, I am still able to hike and breathe in fresh air, and see the beauty all around me. I don't need long flowing hair or a perfectly toned and tanned body to enjoy hiking in the woods. I'm blessed and thankful to be just the way I am. Too bad little Max wasn't here to enjoy the hike with us, though.  I think I'll dedicate this hike to him.

Our "Little Guy" Max

Until Next Time,


Lay said...

Great post, Debbie. It was sweet to learn about Max. Hiking in the woods is one of my very favorite things to do. Being in the woods brings me peace and the ability to live in the moment. I, too, love finding mushrooms and wildflowers and ferns and...everything! Thanks for this walk with you on one of your favorite trails.

Sharon said...

I really enjoyed this post, Debbie. It was fun to "go along" with you to witness what you saw and thought about as you hiked. How nice to have had Max as a hiking companion for those years.

Karen said...

I love this post Debbie. I loved hearing about Max, how very precious he was! And I laughed about Jack! That is so funny!! Being out in nature (and your trail is gorgeous and those mountains!!! Oh my!!!) always causes me to think more deeply, like you did. And that story about the runners, it was funny yet so relatable - it's how we feel if we're being honest! It just made me laugh because I've said those words, "I could look like that if I wanted to (and if I was 40 years younger!!)" It's tough, but we have to appreciate who we are, and we have to accept how our bodies change because it's inevitable. Down the road those two women will be in the same boat, even though they'd never believe it now. I wouldn't have believed it in my 40's, but sure we are!! This is such a great post - and I can so very much relate to the thoughts that go through your head while walking and looking at things in nature. I'm going to read though it again because it was just that good!

notdeadyetstyle said...

Thank you for taking us along on this trip. I love that you revel in the small as well the large and impressive. And yes, strong roots are what we all need! xox


Debbie-Dabble Blog and A Debbie-Dabble Christmas said...

thanks so much for stopping by and for your kind comment about our 40th Wedding Anniversary! I envy you so being able to go on a hike. I am in need of a knee replacement and can not walk for any distance. hopefully, when I have my knee replaced, I will be able to enjoy a hike again!