It was spring in Aspen, when the mountains are still too muddy and snowy to play in, a time when one craves the warmth of the desert and the desire to get away and reset. It was time to get away with girlfriends and so off I headed with my friends to our favorite accessible destination, Moab.
On our way we stopped at Fruita for some mountain biking. First on everyone’s agenda was to pack the cooler with ice and beers for apres ride. I tried to change the plan, “Shouldn’t we get it after the ride so it’s cold and frosty?” I am no beer aficionado and my friends looked at me as if I had three ears and a third eye (and I’m not talking dharma). I’m certain they were wondering how such a novice beer drinker could have remained as their close friend for so long.
Normally a get up and go, fit it all in kind of group, we took our time, lingering over amazing veggie sandwiches at Camilla’s Kaffe. The freshly baked bread was so divine I had to break my “no wheat” rule, eating my bread as well as any other bread that was tossed down by others who were saving their carbs for beer. This was just the beginning of rules unbroken. Don’t get me wrong, we all love our husbands and would never break the matrimonial rules but there are plenty of other rules to break (I had to sign a privacy waiver so mums the word).
Fruita and Moab Bike Rides:
The first ride was in Fruita on Horse Thief Loop, a great precursor to again riding Klondike’s Bluff in Moab. It felt so good to be in the desert and back on a mountain bike, cruising fast, and hiking our bike, up and down trails that wound through sandy and rocky terrain. Getting a little tired of body slams I have abstained from riding for the past few years but with the full suspension bikes the ride is a completely different experience.
We took our time, determined to not get lost and to get back in time to drink our beers to the setting sun. At the beginning and the end of the trail you have to hike your bike. As we hiked down, adjusting our bikes to maneuver them over large boulders, cute girls passed, their hair in tidy little ponytails and their skinny bottoms in the latest bike shorts, our smiles held an edge. We used to be like that, keeping up with the fashions, instead of spending all of our money on the latest gear for our kids, and getting up early to get on it so that we could get back in time to shower and go out on the town.
But I’ll tell you what, even though half of us were riding on ancient bikes and wearing ratty old clothes and tennis sneakers for our flat bike peddles, and even though our glasses weren’t made for riding and our helmets were slightly askew, in each of our own little ways we were still rock-stars, completely happy with how our lives have progressed. The thing is, we kinda would like to retain that right to take off whenever we want without having to be a master planner and cutting off an arm and a leg to make it happen.
As the weekend unfolded and the beautiful light of the desert worked its way into our being we spoke of all of our memories together from making out with strangers in golden bird cages at our favorite long gone Champagne Bar, Andres, where the roof opened up to the stars over the dance-floor, to catching first gondola in the 90’s to propel ourselves down Walsh’s on a powder day and ending up at 1am dancing in our ski boots at The Paragon, to morning sickness that was far worse than the hangover we felt the next day after said Paragon night, to riding in a limo together up into the mountains to say “I Do”, to the here and now where we were finally getting back on our mountain bikes to tear it up in Moab during the day and doing what we did in the night, which included my HOT friend Mary straddling me on the bed to perform the drool torture game. Mary, do me a favor and practice your drool control…and I’ll do the same for our next venture. Paybacks a bitch!
And it was so good. No, magnificent, to all be together, untethered. And new memories were formed of making friends with weathermen in the middle of nowhere and of Cathy, our beautiful, long-legged bike bitch, saving us from having to bike miles and miles with a broken derailer. And Michele, such a beautifully strong and funny, petite little thing of a woman. And Stephanie, a firecracker sparking every moment with lit enthusiasm.? And Gretchen, our tough little Aspen girl ready for every challenge, no matter how daunting. And Mary, HOT in all of her blonde-haired, bodacious, Hollywood story-book hotness. And Jen ready to catch a grenade and do the splits for ya. And Molly, grounded and true with a whole lotta spice tossed in. And last, but certainly not least, the birthday girl, Patty, so funny that she makes all of us, “bout pee in our pants,” and so strong that she charms the boys as she passes them on her bike, her steely blue eyes laughing as she leaves them in her wake.
So next time when you are singing out of tune or life is getting the best of you, don’t wallow in your misery, just call a friend and plant the seed that you need to get out of town and if the seed does not take fruition than get on the horn and start planning it yourself and I promise you that you will emerge smiling and life will blossom again into a huge, brilliant flower with deeply saturated colors…and no stingers.
The friend is the (wo)man who knows all about you, and still likes you. ~Elbert Hubbard,
The Notebook, 1927 A loyal friend laughs at your jokes when they’re not so good, and sympathizes with your problems when they’re not so bad. ~Arnold H. Glasgow
A true friend never gets in your way unless you happen to be going down. ~Arnold Glasow
But if the while I think on thee, dear friend, All losses are restored and sorrows end. ~William ShakespeareFamous Quotes About Friends