Saturday, June 23, 2007

Making The Best Of It

The weekend finds me here at home and not traveling the roads with Bivouac. Since there are still 769 days until complete freedom I guess I can't complain too much....Besides I have another trip planned which I'll tell you about a little later. This day was payback for my Wyoming trip. There was grass to mow, trimming to be done and a lot of general cleanup and maintenance work.
Since I was home, I took The Emmer to work this morning at 6am. The Emmer, by the way, has decided to try for her driver's license once more towards the end of July. She has passed the written test and only needs to pass the actual driving test. We will double up on her practice driving to help her get ready. We all look forward to the freedom she will have once she gets that license!

Even though this was a "payback weekend" I still needed to be vigilant and train for my days of retirement. With this in mind, after a full day of chores, I broke out the hammock for another training session.
Hammocks can be dangerous things and they need to be treated with respect. I have a friend who suffered serious, though gratefully not fatal, grass burns as a result of a lack of respect for this complex weight distribution apparatus. There is a technique to the proper utilization of a hammock that can take years to master. I have vowed to be a master by the time I retire so practice is important.

Look at the picture above. This is the basic "on your back with feet uncrossed" position. Note the tilt of the hammock cross bar....pitiful. I need a lot of work on that one!

After about 45 minutes of practice with this, the most basic of maneuvers, I was able to achieve a respectable orientation. The crossbar is level and the end ropes are uniformly positioned and stretched to the post. I had to experiment with numerous butt to head orientations to finally overcome the list to the left. Being a natural lefty it is much harder to overcome this dip to the

Once I had a good handle, or should I say footle, on the most basic of positions, it was time to press the envelope a bit. At the next level of difficulty is the "crossed feet" position and within this position there are two subsets....the "left foot over right foot" and the "right foot over left foot".

As I mentioned, I am a natural lefty so "left foot over right foot" was the place to begin! Alas, I had the same initial problems with this position as I did with the uncrossed position. List to the left. I was really disgusted with myself and almost took the easy way out of quitting and going back to yard work but I didn't work for 35 years to just give up! No sir! I dug deep. I tried every butt to head orientation my body would allow. I was so exhausted that at one point I almost fell asleep but I didn't give up and before you know it....viola...perfecto!

This is akin to learning how to ride a bicycle. You try and try and just can't seem to get it when all of a've got it! And just to prove to myself that I indeed "had it", I went for the "right foot over left foot" position and without missing a beat....I aced that one too! Well, to be humble about it maybe I didn't ace the last one but it was pretty darned good.

All these contortions and dangerous butt to head maneuvers really took their toll on me so after this last success I put the hammock away and went inside for a well deserved nap.

Since I'm home tomorrow as well I guess I'll do some more catching up on yard work and then if I can stand the mental strain I might...just might, pull the hammock out again for another training session.

Thanks for visiting.

P.S. I'm so drained, I'll wait till the next post to fill you in on the next road trip...but I'll give you a little tidbit. You're going to get to know #4 a lot better!

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