I’m making it a point of late to savor every bit of warm and sunny outside time I can get. I have been absolutely sissified when it comes to cold weather, and I’m dreading the coming winter. Anyway, today was f’ing beautiful.

Taking advantage of the last hour or so of daylight, I set out for a ride. Since the trails are mostly abandoned at this time of day, I strapped on my CD player and stuck Coltrane in my ears. The music added energy, and I was soon pumping away. Not just through my legs, but in my mind. I’ve had more than a few comments about my seeming unhappiness lately, and I wanted to know why.

I’m not sure that I got very far on that question, though. Part of the trail runs along a construction site, which is now a wide area filled with rocks and dirt. Some of it was packed dirt, so I decided to make use of those knobby tires I had.. It was a lot of fun, little hops off of rises, or scrambling up a pile of dirt. I didn’t think about much of anything- just focused on the simple pleasure of it all. But I soon needed to move on, before I was caught out without a light.

So as I headed farther along the trail, on a downhill stretch, I saw a packed dirt mound off to the side at the bottom of the hill. Absolutely perfect to launch a boy and his bike from. As I got closer, I decided to do it. I thought about how it felt when I was the only 8 year old who jumped the BMX ramps the teenagers did. Or about the time I pulled the guy from the flaming truck. Or the time I just grabbed her hand and went with it. All the times I just did it- when it felt just as exciting as this jump was going to feel. All these thoughts were in my head as I rushed up to the mound.

And at the last second, I turned back to the trail.

I’m still not sure what that says.