the leaves are changing colors and the shadows have shifted. time to start stocking the nest for the upcoming wet cycle.
dad shoulders the responsibility and...im going woodcuttin on my saturday! up to our cabin in strawberry where downed wood abounds. i saw, split and load approximately a cord of wood before noon. fukin tazmanian devil shatters the morning serenity of this sleepy retirment community. my neighbors are looking out of their windows past steamy cups of coffee, wonderin of the spry, 'young' newcomer wearin tattered overalls with a steel-your-face patch!
i tie down the load in my grossly overloaded toyota and trailer, and split to the american river with my two cans of beer and my retreiver. i quickly put 36 ounces in my head (one was a tall can), and am wishin i had more.
dog's chasin sticks in the cold water, dad's boulderin on everything in site. i walk back up to the cabin and look into the liquor cupboard, which came fully stocked with the relic cabin. i uncork an old, old bottle of sheraz vino. just a small cup to complement and perpetuate my buzz.
between my overworked morning, my lack of quality breakfast, and my choice of beverages, im tilting a little to the east. oh shite, im scheduled to pick up my daughters in 90 minutes down in placerville. i call the sitter (grandma) and explain my predicament. ""im a cop magnet with the load of wood i got, and im three sheets to the wind so to speak, would it be ok if i have mom pick up the angels at 7?""
since this is the first time i have pulled this card in 5-years, she concedes. so i pedal my bike and trailer up to the leap, shoulder my rack, rope and silent partner, and stroll off to climb something. oh, and since i wont be drivin for a mere couple of hours, i'll just take this bottle of wine with me to keep me courageous.
so here comes up the pony express a tattered and worn old boy adorned in older cams and grateful dead ensignia, swillin shiraz and smilin at all of the cowboy ghosts.
i settle on east crack and attempt to run the first two pitches together with my 70 meter rope. just shy of bushy ledge the end of my rope spins thru my silent partner. hmm. off belay i whimper to my ropemate. my usual backup knot consists of the clove-hitched slack loops on the side of my harness. as i had let out the last coil of slack, i temporarily had no backup knot. luckily the tail of rope snags on a flake 20 feet below me. i down solo and set up my belay. rap and clean the pitch, and summit in the evening twilight.
rejoining the dad journey, i aim toward home. all the wiser and a little more fulfilled.