My Trophy Husband and I rarely get to ride together. We both ride a lot, but we also both get caught up in the endless daily sprints that render our family functional in society. It’s easy to forget how to ride with each other. Or even how to just hang together without all the distractions. It’s so infrequent that it always feels like the first ride back. We need to practice both.
A convergence of fortunate timing landed us in Grand Junction, Colorado at the end of October. The Western Slope boasts gorgeous orchards and vineyards, rivers, and pleasant weather nearly year-round. Fourteeners soar to the east. Sandstone desert canyons, spires, and hoodoos, ancient seabeds and reefs, and Ancestral Puebloan sacred places lie in wait for me to explore to the southwest.
Most importantly, grandparents, our children’s only surviving set, live here. They are taking the younglings on an Adventure involving a camping trailer, geothermal springs, and geo-caching. They will lavish our kids with comfort foods, hot dogs, s’mores, games, books, hiking, folklore, and lots and lots of love. Just this morning, my children learned how to cool their oatmeal with a spoonfull of vanilla ice cream.
We have five days to ride together if we want them. Five. Days. Just us.
As I write this, Navajo sandstone is warming in the sunrise. Waiting to radiate the day’s heat into my back tonight as I watch the Orion Nebula and recall Navajo Star Stories. The light from Á tse A ts'oosí takes two million years to reach Earth. This fact leaves me breathless every time I see The Hunter. The Milky Way tilts around the horizon carrying billions and billions of stars along with us. The unimaginable unlikeliness of this ride.
So we’re off. With bikes and a tent.
To ride alone in the quiet desert and rediscover ourselves. And, hopefully, each other.