“I opened my eyes
And looked up at the rain,
And it dripped in my head
And flowed into my brain,
And all that I hear as I lie in my bed
Is the slishity-slosh of the rain in my head.
I step very softly,
I walk very slow,
I can't do a handstand--
I might overflow,
So pardon the wild crazy thing I just said--
I'm just not the same since there's rain in my head.”
Rain by Shel Silverstein
I love rain and I hate rain. I enjoy watching the brown earth and naked trees transform into lush living things. I can appreciate the gloomy atmosphere as it’s laced with a fresh and clean fragrance. The soft pitter-patter on the porch makes a relaxing background melody. It’s even tolerable when I’m sheltered by an umbrella and draped in a waterproof weave. But the novelty wares off when I’m fully submerged and unable to escape the unfriendly chill that eventually saturates the fabric of my existence.
For the last six weeks I’ve been imprisoned by the power of La Nina. She first stormed in with fierce winds and lately she’s taken shape as low hanging rain clouds. The foul weather was manageable at first. “We need the moisture,” I keep reminding myself. But when I’m cooped up and sedentary for too long my creativity dries up and my body seizes with anxiety. I’ve grown dependent upon the sensations of rock climbing and addicted to the spontaneity of traveling. When I’m climbing outside I’m able to engage in the present moment, let go of stress, and find inspiration in the movement on interesting rock features in a beautiful and unpredictable environment. When I can’t climb outside, I become unfit for society. As a service to those around me and to myself, I put on my Gore-Tex boots and jacket and step out into the great wilderness to explore my immediate surroundings.
Eldorado Springs is unlike anyplace I’ve ever lived; it’s full of surprises. Within 2.4 square miles, there’s a post office, dispensary, art center, artesian spring water swimming pool, and a gateway to endless climbing in the magical Eldorado Springs Canyon. While some people fear the threat of other people, I fear wild animals in the darkness. A bear cub, bobcat and a fox have graced my doorstep and deer legs mysteriously reappear on my porch.
From my tree house high up on the hill, there are trails leading into heavily forested hillsides littered with unclimbed rock. Even though the poison ivy is rampant and the rock is soaking wet, just looking at interesting features stimulates motivation and creativity.
I always think that I have to travel away from home for relaxation and inspiration. As it turns out, I just have to step outside my doorstep…even when Mother Nature gives us the cold shoulder.