While I was in school, I found it hard to balance school, work and my hobbies — especially outdoor recreation. Which is to say that, especially my last semester (this spring), when I had 17 credit hours, I made very little attempt to get out. I even stopped biking to class. It wasn’t ideal, but I went into survival mode and … well, I survived. I should post about the end of school sometime in the near future.
Inertia can be a powerful force. Once I got in the habit of staying indoors, it became easy to keep doing so, and for a while, I found little motivation to get out.
But, lately I’ve been putting forth some effort into trying to get back outside, mostly on the bike, but Saturday I suggested to Sarah that we go hiking. We headed out to Brown County State Park to hike the Pine Loop, which was built for mountain biking but is also great for hiking purposes.
First we made a stop at the nature center, which we had never visited together, even though we’ve been going to Brown County for years. There, we learned more about the area and saw some live, native creatures including turtles and snakes. Outdoors they had a demonstration involving a large red-tailed hawk. We watched that for a while before going down to the trail.
We headed out, on a short trail with no epic expectations, just wanting to spend some quality time together in the woods. We didn’t even bring camera aside from our phones, but we didn’t use them much, either. It was a warm, sunny July afternoon, though it was several degrees cooler in the woods.
After our hike, we drove back toward town but took a detour on 446 to eat an early dinner at the Scenic View restaurant, overlooking Lake Monroe, then took a very scenic and remote route home, getting lost along the way and discovering some great new roads in the process.
It was a wonderful way to spend our day, and I look forward to more opportunities for days like this. School was a great experience, and I’m glad I finished, but in some ways it was a setback as far as taking a couple more years of my life goes. And it certainly ate into my recreation time more than I would have liked. I’m glad to be finally getting back on track and trying to reclaim the direction I want to take. It involves a lot more lollygagging around our countryside with my beautiful wife.