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Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Man Trip

This past weekend some friends and I went up to the Obed for a man weekend.  In order to have a man weekend you need the following components:  men, fire, something to cook over that fire, and...well, that's really about it.  There are a few optional things that can be added to make the trip even more manly like: knives, guns, fishing, climbing, hunting, hiking, late night campfire stories, bear encounters, rigging of a shelter through use of sophisticated knots or other skills learned in the boyscouts, not having a cell phone or watch.  We had a great time and the weather was perfect.  I actually got to use my ENO hammock that I love to catch some zzz's in (10 to be exact, I slept like a baby after being up most of the night before with our sick little baby).  I woke up in the morning to the smell of bacon being cooked and Texas Toast being...well...toasted.  After breakfast we hiked up to south clear creek and did a little sport climbing.  Luckily Peter Brown the spider monkey was present to lead climb all the routes so the rest of our fat A's could make it to the top.  Below are some pics from the weekend.

 Our Campsite.

 About five minutes after arriving Rob pulled dinner out of the river.

 Our outdoor kitchen.

 My paradise sleeping spot.

 No outdoor kitchen is complete without your own personal chef.

Pete looking pensively out over the lookout.

The Obed is one of the south east's best climbing areas.  There is something for all skill levels.  This is called "The Stephen King Library" and is out of my skill level (The routes extend to the roof above).

 Peter starting us off.

 Matt enjoying a great day of climbing.

 Halfway there.

 Made it to the top.

 This is me demonstrating what a bad belay looks like:  slack line, eyes off the climber, possibly daydreaming about what I want for lunch.  (J/K, I was resting my neck from looking up while Peter was tied off at the top setting up a top rope)

Michael at the top.  He was so fast this was the only picture Matt was able to get before he was done.

Trying to tie a knot wondering if the knots tied in the tendons in my hand are going to hold up.

 Me = 240lbs  Peter = 135lbs  <--That whole situation = tethering Peter to the tree behind him so he can belay me without being ripped off the ground if I fall.

 Good to know they were paying attention.


 Spider Monkey Pete on the second route.

 Getting ready to try a crazy move.

 Mission Impossible style.

 No longer spider monkey this is Spiderman.

Rob, Daniel, and Josh caught up with us just before we had to head back to civilization and Rob took a turn on the second route we attempted.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Knoxville - It's for runners.

I do not enjoy running.  At least not in groups, or during the day, or when it is hot.  My favorite time to run is when it is cold, dark, and I am alone.  As I write this down I see that it sounds very weird but I have reasons for each.  COLD - I hate to be hot and when I exercise I immediately get hot so exercising when it is cold/cool keeps me at just the right temperature.  DARK/ALONE - I don't like running around people because I enjoy the solitude (dogs don't count) of running.  I don't listen to music, talk with a running partner, read a book on a treadmill, or anything else.  I love smelling the air and just being left to my thoughts and at night I can do that because no one dares run the Lakeshore (Mental Health Hospital/Asylum) loop when it is dark except me, Chaco, and the occasional escaped inmate.  All this being said I did not run the Knoxville Marathon/Half-Marathon, but a lot of people did.  Many of our friends and family were out taking advantage of this PERFECT day that God made to meet a personal goal or two.  We took River out early to cheer on Uncle Johnny and take part of his numero uno activity...people watching.

 Waiting for Johnny with the cousins and other friends.

 Addalee's sign.

If you're going to be a Rockstar you've got to practice.  Even if it is 8am on a Sunday morning on the side of a street in a construction zone.  

 So, finally after all the old ladies ran by carrying their purses Johnny made it to where we were waiting.

 Thomas unveiling Kimberly's sign for Meg down in the old City.  (After Johnny ran by close to the house we drove downtown to the old city to see Meg run her leg of the full marathon relay.

 Inspecting.  T approved.

The girls waiting and cheering on the rando's.  River was clapping and cheering as well.

 Meg's family came out to see her run.

Probably the most enthusiastic runner at mile 17.5