Hemel en Aarde
I’m feeling quite sorry for myself. I’ve pinched a nerve in my shoulder. Or maybe I’ve ripped my rotator-cuff, although my range is still pretty good… so I’m leaning towards self-diagnosing the former (as one does). I feel it though… from behind my shoulder blade, through my elbow and (occasionally) right into my pinky finger.
I’ve been doing a lot of heavy lifting in the workshop and am being rewarded for my efforts by being smote down with some form impingement. Getting older sucks. How do old people (that I now imagine are over fifty) get out of bed without first loading up with NSAIDs? Is there some secret lifestyle* that I am on the cusp… (I use the word cusp quite loosely since I feel I still have a couple of good years left in me) of being initiated into.
*Like when you get to big five oh-my-god… and some anonymous benefactor sends you a lifetime supply of Ibuprofen. (the things we fantasize about now)
Today I sought physiotherapy… I had already done some preliminary research and ranked them by order of hotness… and obviously discarded any males in the profession. If you’re gonna get abused by someone… rather get #$%@ up by someone you find attractive. I’m pretty sure this is a codified mantra in the dealing-with-life-apparatus that is Joeys mind. Also lithe and pulchritudinous obviously translates into skill.
She turned out to be tiny, describing herself as being built like a garden gnome and having to stand on a stool in order to work on my hulking form. But I do feel better now… but I also also took some Tramadol.
Because I was moping around and being miserable we decided on a short road trip this morning up the Hemel en Aarde valley. (translated as Heaven and earth) as opposed to well… I think my wife was just tired of her malingering husband complaining about how hard everything is and just wanted to get out of the house. (and maybe, if the opportunity arose, drown me)
Its super close to us… so really ‘road trip’ is a bit of an exaggeration… since you can quite easily bike from our house to this point. Well, maybe not easily, since it is a valley and therefore some gradient is implied. (more on this in a bit)
We drove up to the De Bos dam (which I guess translates as The Bush Dam?) which is where they have dammed the river that runs ‘past’ our house. This is the predominate water source for our town, as well as the myriad of vineyards and farms that line the valley. We actually sourced a lot of the wine we served at our wedding from this valley.
The day started out quite wet. I’m still wrapping my head around the fifty two types of weather in a day phenomenon that is living here.
Backboard snacks and coffee. And then we ended up here…
Its called Die Plaaskombuis (the farm kitchen), its about halfway up the valley. (Notice how the weather has completely changed after about an hour). Its got a cool playground for the kids. Also they have cows, chickens and some other stuff, including a restaurant/home-craft section that sells eggs, freshly baked bread and fudge etc.
In any event, it had a map outside… because this place is also a sorta-Midway point for all the MTB trails in the valley and it seems a lot of peeps ride up here for breakfast. Trails are organized blue, green, red and black… ranging from 7km for the baby blue route to a 65km black that includes 1800mtrs of elevation change. Not sure I’ll be doing that any time soon… in fact the longest MTB track I’ve ever done was 45km. (back when I was lean and mean… and eh… less of a couch potato)
Color me interested. It motivated me enough to visit the Bike Shop that anchors the trailhead at the bottom the valley. Bought a permit, which they were kind enough to pro-rata for the rest of the year and ended up buying some vertical bike racks so when I can pick up something heavier than a coffee cup I can mount the bikes to the wall in the garage. (everyone knows real cyclists mount their bikes to the wall in super-ergonomic and anal-retentive ways. I will obviously also add additional hooks and shelving for helmets and ancillary gear.
None of this actually gets me back on the trail though. So I also did thirty minutes of spinning… which almost killed me. I don’t think I’m even being sardonic. I think actual death was totally on the cards.
Ended off the day at the beach. This is the aforementioned river just before it flows into the sea. You can just make out our house in the distance.
Decided to ice off my shoulder by swimming in the 14C (58F) water without a wetsuit. Which… as ideas go, was really terrible. Also, this other family was sitting on the rocks drinking coffee and I could hear them discussing if I was ‘actually’ going to do it. Which meant… well you know what it meant.
I also purposefully stayed in the surf until my teeth were chattering uncontrollably and my testicles had retreated so far up into my body I doubted they would never come out again. Spoiler alert everything is fine and swinging freely again.
Yeah I’m super hardcore.
Also I’m pretty sure the cold actually made everything happening in my scapula worse. So there’s that.
Now I’m semi-supine, eating Warcrimes pizza (what my wife calls what I do to pizza; pineapple, garlic, Parmesan cheese and chili), half heartedly watching Australian masterchef and blogging. I miss the old judges. Whatever their names were. Ha ha.