We didn't do a lot on vacation besides visit family. My mother is in her 90s, and has very little interest in going anywhere. Most days, I got up and exercised, and then we ran errands after lunch (the grocery store, Fred Meyer's, Walmart, etc.) Sitting around the house all day makes me stir-crazy, and this is typical for our visits. My mom is only interested in going out to eat (which I usually avoid), and my dad was exactly the same way over the last 5-6 years of his life (and SO sedentary, in general). My mom has been either depressed or just tired and physically achy since he passed, which is understandable. But she has slowed down a lot this past year. I thought she was getting some energy back, but apparently not. It's sad and worrisome.
HalfshellHusband and I got away to the coast one of the days we were there. It was unexpectedly gorgeous, sunny skies and temperatures around 70o with very little wind. I walked a looong way down the beach at the water line, and then turned around and came back. SO nice. The beach itself was a mess. I thought we were witnessing the aftermath of some kind of tragic 'crab tide' disaster, with the number of (often tiny) shells lying around. But I looked it up later, and it turned out to be molting season for the male crabs, so they were all just shedding their old shells. Mostly. IDK-- some of those things didn't really look empty. :O
My souvenir from that trip was the tiniest sand dollar I've ever seen, smaller than a quarter and utterly intact apart from some chipped edges.
I didn't make it to Tryon Creek this time, unfortunately. All my walking was in Eugene, out in the open sun on the Amazon parkway and confined to the areas between major intersections. Thank goodness for podcasts! I listened to several more episodes of By The Book, reconfirming once again why Dean is America's favorite husband...
There were a lot of tempting blackberries along the parkway (sadly, I never found time to pick any) and some nice wildflowers. I finally identified the one with the beautiful blue flowers I've wondered about for so long. It's wild chicory. Look at that gorgeous color!
Now that we're back home, it's been nice to go cycling again. There were some surprising side effects Friday and Saturday. I guess it's been awhile since I took more than a week off from cycling, because I found myself battling headaches and neck pain and couldn't figure out why. But it's the weight of the helmet in that crouched position, and I used to expect that after a vacation! And dreaded it, but still... Maybe taking just 7-8 days off conserves enough muscle strength to avoid going through that readjustment? That's how the last few years have been. But 10 days was clearly too many.
What that means is that I need to get out of town more often and for longer periods of time, because if I've forgotten about that neck-pain penalty then I haven't been doing enough vacationing vs. staycationing! :O