Monday, April 13, 2009

How'd I miss the Vernal Equinox

Somehow when the vernal equinox came this year I missed it. I don't recall what my preoccupation was but for some reason I wasn't paying attention. I don't like to miss these events. Observance of such things ties me to an ancient past, puts me in a line of succession that goes back to the first man who looked into the heavens and was able to pick out the patterns of activity there. One thing I routinely do, for instance, along these lines, is look for the first sliver of moon each month and when I find it ponder on the number of others on the planet doing that same thing at that same time. A small congregation, I imagine, but a congregation still, connected by the rhythm of the lunar cycle.

Last month I traveled to New York. That was a disaster. Family problems. I thank God for my family, but this is more than I can handle.

In February I took a trip too. I rode my BMW up to Ft. Worth area to visit an aunt. Then I rode West on I-20. I didn't know where in particular I was riding, but I ended up at Monahans Sand Hills State Park. The ride was hard and I lucked out in that the wind was not blowing, rather, when I got to the park it had died down. I camped there two days and hiked over the dunes laid down by the passing of glaciers in an ancient ice age. This is a beautiful place, this Earth, full of wonders beyond imagining. Those dunes, that whole experience, left me truly renewed. After 200 miles the first day, and no sleep that night, I rode 300 the next. I rode right through stress and boredom, weariness and cold winds, hunger, cloying high pitched screaming noise, incessant vibration, all that is motorcycling. I rode right through it to revitalization itself. But, of course, both days together amounted to a short ride but still I was on the road from 8:30 a.m. till four. Another Beemer showed up as I was finishing making camp. We shared some Johnnie Walker and swapped stories over an evening meal. Me, chemically heated MRE. He, something from REI, I think, which he cooked over a tiny stove. He was on his way to Piedras Negras vicinity to rally with other bikers along the Rio Grande. I have been on those roads twice, so I told him he was in for a nice ride.

When I left the sand hills I rode to Iraan which is where U.S. 190 ends, and took it East to where it intersects with U.S. 183. This is one of the best rides/drives in Texas, I think. It parallels I-10 for a long way and is the closest thing, nowadays, to what passes for a deserted highway. Very light traffic. It took me home and I spent many hours just being in my own personal space, in my element, asphalt to the front, disappearing to the rear. Fast.