Vacation is over and as always it always feels that it was not enough time to decompress. The first week you are just trying to get used to the idea that you don’t have to go to the office and the second week just flies too quickly. My time off was mellow and off key. I spend a wonderful 2 days with my good friends and was very glad of the company. The rest was just me and Opee walking and hiking. Although I could only get two hikes in it was two wonderful ones.
First was my favorite place on the coast called Bayocean. Quite a literal name as this skinny peninsula has Tillamook Bay on one side and the Pacific Ocean on the other. The whole loop is about 8 miles of different terrain and ambiance. I suppose that is what appeals to me so greatly. I actually like the bayside better as it has vegetation, sand dunes, and water. It is quite beautiful and serene. There are never too many people there and because we went on a weekday we did not encounter a single soul. To get out of town is never a bad thing but to get out to a beautifulness and the familiar is always a huge plus.
The second hike was Wildwood Trail of Forest Park which is the biggest park in Portland. The whole trail is 30 miles (out and back). I have yet to do the whole thing. This time I did 6 miles and because I have not gone there is a while it was refreshing this time. It was a bit muddy and crowded but in spite the wrong shoes that I wore and the hoards of people and dogs I managed to feel zen and tranquil. My monster was super happy as well and kept wanting to run way ahead of me. Of course, he was on the leash as he has a crazy prey drive and there are just too many temptations in the forest (I lost him there once) so I ran with him for a little bit until I was positively out of breath. It always takes me by surprise that in Oregon in the middle of the winter everything is still green. I’ve read somewhere that being under green foliage reduces stress tremendously. This hike was such therapy.
Upon returning I baked bread, read my favorite book (Master & Margarita by Bulgakov) and continued to stay in the present. Unintended mindfulness was calming and life felt right.