I sit here completely inspired by sweat.
I painstakingly purchased a new pair of sneakers today (that's Jersey speak for "tennis shoes") and in my excitement, I decided to take them for a little test spin.
I never exercise before 9:30 PM. Never.
Actually, who am I kidding? I never exercise at all. I did tolerate a brief stint at Curves when I felt that my mom was really needing a partner in crime, but otherwise: never.
Regardless, I've been wearing them around all day in hopes of breaking them in. For what I'm not sure, but I know that newly purchased sneakers need to be broken in. That, and part of me was sort-of planning ahead for the walk on Sunday. So in walking around the house all day wearing these things, I decided that I needed to take them out for a REAL test spin.
Folks, I just went running. Like, really running. For a good, solid 40 minutes, I was running.
No, I dont think you heard correctly.
I digress (but not completely).
I was so excited that I made a new iPod playlist just for the occasion.
So here I am, 40 minutes later. My heart is still pounding just a bit in my chest as I catch my breath every few seconds. My ponytail, once pulled taut, now hangs a tad sloppy and loose and the short little hairs at the back of my neck cling to my skin in sweaty strands as perspiration beads up into little droplets in my cleavage.
My legs ache. My hips ache. My feet ache. And above all this aching is my damp skin, feeling strangely tight as it sticks loosely to my clothing.
And this has inspired me.
Honestly, it's been a pretty inspirational day all-around. Earlier, I felt inspired (partially by my new sneakers, and partially by the start of my photography 101 class yesterday) to climb up on the roof of my house and try my hand at shooting the moon.
This was only partially a good idea.
I didn't see how I could possibly make it up onto the roof carrying a tripod, so I opted for steadying my hand by anchoring my elbow on my knee or some other handy and close-by object.
Camera slung around neck, I made my way up the courtyard wall and shimmied to the ledge of the roof. This was the easy part. I've done this a million times!
I can remember as a kid playing on the roof far more often than we played in the yard.
My siblings and I were relatively destructive by our very nature, and were known to sled off the roof during the winter, jump off the roof onto our monstrous trampoline during the summer, and utilize the roof as an all-purpose playground during the rest of the year.
All of this took place when we weren't cutting through our limbs with bow-saws or performing death defying stunts with our home-made wooden bike ramps. We owned bicycle helmets that one of my parents purchased (in what we now recognize as a thoughtful yet futile gesture), but they were always creatively used as props never as protective head gear. We were pretty successful overall, as I can only recall maybe three or four trips to the emergency room (and one was not even involving one of our stupid stunts it was involving a box turtle and my brothers bottom lip).
Regardless, the roof and I were good friends.
I perched myself on the peak, relying on the friction of the shingles to keep me steady, and brought my right knee up to rest my chin on. My left leg laid flat against the pitch of the roof, angled downward. I fumbled with my camera settings for a minute and then spent a few good moments trying to reduce the camera shake. I fired off two crappy shots and as I was aiming for the third, in dire concentration, WHOOSH!
Leaning too far over, I toppled sideways to my right as my left leg came swinging around, completely over my head.
And there I was, tumbling feet over head down the pitch of the roof and making a fervent effort to hang onto anything I could catch a hold of.
The shingles hurt like a bitch, but eventually worked in my favor. If we had installed the Spanish tiles (like my mother so desperately wanted) years ago, I'd have been in big trouble. So would have the tiles.
The leg swinging completely over my head did a little bit of a number on my hip, and I could feel it immediately as I clung motionless to the edge of the roof for a moment, catching my breath.
I made my way back to the peak only to realize that I hadn't really planned my descent. It's much easier to climb up the wall of the courtyard than to climb down. And granted, it's only 7 or 8 feet from the ground, but it still feels like a lot when you're sitting there.
So I did. I sat there. I sat there for a good 10 minutes.
I counted to three a few times as I tried to psyche myself up enough to take the Nike challenge and "just do it".
And in the meantime, I took a picture of me stuck on the roof. Thoughtful, right?
Yes, friends, I eventually got up enough guts to take the plunge.
It wasn't all that bad. And I knew it wouldn't be all that bad.
Suffering only a few minor scrapes, I made it out alive and ventured back into the house to share my story with my brother and his wife.
Apparently everyone had heard a noise up on the roof, but had no idea what it was. Rhiannon thought someone was up in the loft and had dropped a box.
No, no Rhiannon that was just me, falling off the roof.
All this, and this is the only shot I got of the damned moon.
I should probably take a little caution the next time I feel inspired.
Currently listening : The Dandy Warhols Come Down By The Dandy Warhols
Release date: By 15 July, 1997