Monday, December 06, 2010

Eat Gravel and Rock the Hanukkah Bush

This weekend was an exercise in sensory overload. There were highs and lows, laughter and tears (well, technically, I was whimpering), and everything in between.
It all started off like a General Mills International Coffee commercial circa 1980s ("Celebrate the moments of your life!") when my friend Rose and I met at the new bakery on South First and Annie. We talked and laughed all morning over espressos, flaky pastries and Oranginas. Eventually Rose announced she had some work to do and had to go. Because it was such a beautiful day, I announced that I was going to jog around Town Lake -- and by jog I mean walk. 
Enjoy your trip; see you next fall!
When I got down to the trail, I bumped into two buddies of mine. I ended up jogging (for reals) much farther than I had planned. It was OK though; I was enjoying the impromptu visit with friends. Georgia said goodbye to us at the Mopac bridge, and then Melissa and I continued running eastbound, chatting away about whatever. I remember thinking that it actually felt good to be running again. My legs were a bit tired, but I had my breath and I was feeling pretty solid and strong.
And that's about when I ate gravel.
I wish I could say that I was on the greenbelt, running intervals up the Hill of Life, or something hard core like that, but My downfall (literally) was stubbing my toe on the Zilker kiddie train track where it crisscrosses with Town Lake trail. As Melissa put it, I looked like a ball player sliding into home plate to win the game. I actually bounced on my belly (bounced, people!) before coming to a complete sliding stop. Oh, and I was wearing a tennis skirt. Awesome.

Once the dust settled, I rolled onto my back and sat up. Everything stung like a sum bitch. I had two bloody knees, two ripped open palms, and my left elbow was dripping blood onto my legs. I immediately knew that nothing was broken, or even sprained, but the sight of the blood and all the stingy and throbbing made me want to wail like a baby. I opted instead to quietly whimper as I picked the rocks out of my skin. Here's a snapshot of my elbow the following morning after I doctored it. I might have gone overboard on the doctoring materials, but I had zero first-aid stuff in my house and I didn't know what to get, so I got a little of everything -- gauze, hydrogen peroxide, band-aids, Neosporin, non-sticking wrap tape, and saline wound wash that squirts from a can. I actually feel safer now, knowing that I have wound wash in the house. Apparently, I'm a kiddie train wreck waiting to happen.

That's a nicely trimmed bush you got there
Saturday night I went over to my friend Ellen's house. She's half Jewish, so she hosted a potluck dinner and Hanukkah bush decorating party. A Hanukkah bush looks mysteriously like a Christmas tree. And by mysteriously, I mean exactly. The evening started off with a feast to die for -- a savory roast, yams, green beans with sliced almonds, gratuitous assortments of fine cheeses, potato latkes, a salad with roasted brussel sprouts and beets. It was YUM-MY. After dinner we decorated the "Christmas Tree I mean Hanukkah Bush" and commenced to oohing and aahing once the last ornament was placed. It occurred to me that every year there's a specific moment when the holiday spirit hits me, and this year it hit me at Ellen's potluck. Thanks, Ellen! You're the best.