Over 500 miles of trails

Someone said that there are over 500 miles of trails in Marin County. I'm going to hike all of them. Want to hear more? Read on...

Location: Woodacre, California, United States

Well, I hike, obviously. I read, without retaining, lots of stuff but mostly classic and contemporary fiction, history, and science. I look at birds and plants. I play my guitar far less than I ought, and watch movies far more. I like to ask people questions, but only if they ask me questions in return. I aspire to honorable behavior and am mostly successful. I'm on the cusp of a career change, with bird research in my past/present and academic librarianship in my future. Occasionally I bust out and cook six course gourmet meals for my friends; for some reason it's always six and never seven or five. Enough about me. What about you? Stranger or friend, drop me a line!

Saturday, January 21, 2006

Forgive me, father, for I have sinned. It's been three hikes since my last post. Hello. I'm back.

I think the problem is that I want too badly for this to be good. And since I feel like, so far, it's rather mediocre, I've been loathe to return to it. My response to not achieving a certain level of excellence is not to try harder, but to restrict myself to activities where I can be guaranteed success. Which runs counter to the whole reason why I started the project in the first place. I don't think I've mentioned this yet. I read an article in _Psychology Today_ (which I never read but happened to pick up) that talked about 'grit'. You know, persistence, doggedness, the ability to see things through to the bitter end. The article was mostly geared toward how you develop grit in your moldable, teachable child. It doesn't tell you how to develop grit as an after-market add-on once you've already been firmly ensconced in your lazy-ass, dilettante-ish ways, which, of course, is the boat I happen to be drifting aimlessly along in. I've accomplished some things in my life, sure, but I've also started a lot of things that I haven't finished, and I've given up on a lot of stuff when it became inconvenient to carry on. So I cast about for the idea for this long term project, and I think that I've already told you that Victor and I came up with this.

And I've been doing pretty well with the hiking side of it, because it's tangible and easy to measure your progress. I've purchased maps that pretty well cover Marin County, and I highlighted all the trails that I've been on so far. I've got a long way to go, but I think I've made a good start. The holidays, and the week after, were pretty slack because I was gone, and it was rainy (perhaps you heard about the flooding and the mudslides? Marin and Sonoma counties were amongst the hardest hit.) But the blogging is hard to find inspiration for. Do I merely travelogue my hike, the mileage, and the predominant relief and ecosystems through which I travel? Do I write about what I'm thinking? I feel that my blog lacks cohesion, that I've gone off the rails a bit even before I've started. So I have to work harder at finding it. And maybe that will earn me a few points on the 'grit' scale. I was only a 3 out of 5 on the _Psychology Today_ self-test.

Next post: More hiking!



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