Choices

It’s been 5 years since I started my WordPress journey, and what an incredible 5 yrs it has been.

Somehow, through all that has happened, a motorcycle wreck, running for political office, opening a business / closing a business / opening another business, and many other things, both positive and challenging, I have managed to post, to respond to comments, and to visit and comment on your posts.

Lately though, I have just not been able to keep up.  Perhaps it’s the new job.  Maybe it’s the hours spent in civic engagement, and the resistance.  Whatever the reason, I’ve just not been able to respond to your comments on my posts.  I have, however, made a commitment to visiting and commenting on  your posts.

Know that I love and read each and every comment, but if I don’t respond in kind it is because for the time being, I’ll be spending my WordPress time visiting and commenting on your posts.  I’ll still be posting though, and hope to have a lighter schedule sometime down the road.

You have become dear friends, and my life is better for it.

♥️

Morning on the River

Just a couple hours on the water.

That’s all it takes to make me breath deeply and smile big.  It’s similar to how I feel on the bike.

Karen encouraged me to set aside the chores for the morning and get out on the river.

We are so fortunate to live on the New River, and can be on the water within 20 minutes of leaving our homes.  The New River is 360 mi (515 km) long and flows through the states of North Carolina, Virginia, and West Virginia.

The part that runs through my little city has just a few Class 1 rapids, but it is often as smooth as glass, offering stunning reflections.

We saw lots of Great Blue Herons, and the fish were jumping right up out of the water.

The roots of this tree reveal evidence of the rise and fall of the water.

When floating this part of the river, you pass under 3 bridges.  The modern day train trestle, the remains of the historic bridge, and in the distance, the new Memorial Bridge.

I’ve posted images of this trestle in the past.  You may remember it.

Despite the risk, it’s hard not to pull out the camera when floating the river.  I keep the camera in a Scuba bag so as to protect it in case the kayak tips over, but even still, I’m always taking a chance when pulling it out of the water safe bag.

It was a perfect morning, and I feel such gratitude for natural wonders and dear friends.

As you read this scheduled post I am enjoying the annual Girls of August (GOA) get together.  You may remembering me telling you about the women that I attended graduate school with over 20 yrs ago.  The Girls Of August have been spending the first week of August together for over 20 years, and it is one of the highlights of the year for all of us.

See you when I get back!

View From the River’s Edge

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If it had been summer, I would have walked right into the river to better capture the late day sun adding light to the trees futher down the way.   Even still, it was a lovely site to see from this park called Riverview.

What a perfect name.

Cycling the Riverway

If you’ve followed along over the past (almost) four years, you know that I am devoted to my motorcycle.  Some of my favorite moments are spent exploring the countryside on my HD Softail Slim.

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What you may not know is that before I fell in love with my motorized bike, I was a regular cyclist.  No, not one of those athletes that you see riding the roads in their colorful jerseys, but I’d ride 10 – 12 miles in the mornings before work, and would take an 18- 20 mile ride almost every weekend.

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Sadly, over the past 7-8 yrs, I’ve averaged just 8 miles per year as an organizer of, and participant in, the Ride of Silence.

The motorcycle definitely rules my heart!

In my determination to rekindle my love with the bicycle, and to get in better shape, I was up and out early yesterday, cycling The Riverway (all images were captured with my cell phone).

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The Riverway is Radford’s bikeway / walkway system.  18 years ago, a group of citizens worked to secure federal and state grant funding, which when matched by Radford’s local government, led to the development of our wonderful bikeway.  As a founding member of Pathways for Radford, it is still a thrill for me to ride on the Riverway, and to see what the City of Radford, and the Citizens of Radford accomplished together!

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One of our fundraising efforts was the brick Pathways Plaza.  Several of my family members are remembered in brick, including my paternal grandparents.

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Benches, situated along The Riverway, also provided fundraising opportunities.

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The bikeway / walkway runs right along the New River, and is a favorite place for walkers, runners, cyclists, and dogs walking their humans.

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The Riverway runs right under Main Street through this tunnel.  The approach to the Tunnel on either end is preceeded by a climb, so  the tunnel provides a chance to catch a breath!

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While I am just getting back on the bicycle, it already feels great, and I am committed to improving my health by riding at least once weekly.  I figure if I get up early enough, I’ll find time to ride both bikes each weekend 🙂

Around Radford

Saturday dawned with a list of errands that needed running, and despite the expectation of rain, I decided to ride the bike.  It should surprise no one that I also made sure to find time to shoot some of the local scene.

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I wish I could give you a little back story about this courtyard and the wall that surrounds it, but I have no history.  The plan is to go to Facebook and see if some of the Radford locals can help me out.  Many is the time that I have tried to capture a photo to reflect the wall’s uniqueness, and many times I have deleted those images.  Not today!

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It was quite overcast, but clouds always make for intriguing images.

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The post processing here reflects the historic trestle over the New River, and a monochrome image will be posted on Monochromia sometime in the next few weeks.

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In order to get these images, I had to stop the bike and walk over the bridge.  Thankfully, this fencing only briefly obscures the view.

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Some friends have purchased, and while still running the business, are renovating this 50 yr old Pizza House.

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A quick stop at a friend’s home yielded these Rhododendron images.  Such a gorgeous bud and bloom!

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Every item on the To Do List was checked off, and I enjoyed a cool, slightly drizzly ride.

Satisfaction indeed!

Along the New

Before heading out of town to celebrate life and the one year anniversary from the wreck, I was able to spend a few moments along the New River.  We’ve continued to have daily rain showers, making for overcast skies (and muddy shoes and pants).

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Knowing that I only had a few minutes, I literally ran down the path towards the trestle.

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We hope that this trestle, connecting the City of Radford and Pulaski County, will eventually be available for shared use between pedestrians, cycists, and trains.

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One of our citizens spends hours making these bluebird houses.  He finds the perfect spots to place the birdhouses, and monitors bluebird activity. Carl is one of those unsung local volunteers, making the natural world and the community a better place through his hard work.

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You’ve heard me ask this before: how lucky am I to live just 5 minutes from this river?

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Next Post:  North Carolina Wineries and “finishing” the trip I started one year ago!

Here She Comes!

The day was beautiful so while on the way home after a lovely visit with friends, I pulled the truck over along the New River.  It was the middle of the day and the sun was bright.

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Only a couple minutes had gone by before I heard the familiar whistle of an approaching train.

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We love our trains here in the New River Valley (you may remember a post about the steam engines that recently came through).

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Once the train had passed over the trestle, I reflected (pardon the pun) on the fact that from this view the new Memorial Bridge can be seen in the distance, and the remains of the old, original train trestle as well.

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The beauty of the river, the architecture of the trestle, and the romance of a train … not a bad way to spend a few moments.