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Old 12-11-2010, 11:19 AM   #1
gypsyrr OP
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The Dark Night of The Sole

For if there is a sin against life, it consists perhaps not so much in despairing of life as in hoping for another life and in eluding the implacable grandeur of this life.
Albert Camus

My apologies to the mystic Carmelite poet and priest, St. John of the Cross, for twisting the title of his famous work on spirituality to illustrate a roadside oddity in the hill country of Texas, but that is how the scene struck me when I first saw it. Let me explain………..

The past couple of months have been difficult ones. The days have taken on the shape of longing for a future while trying to escape the present. I know better than to live like that. I know the danger of missing the 'implacable grandeur' of the present while always longing for something different, and life is just too short to miss out on any of it. The best prescription I have found for restoration and clarity in my mind and soul has always been to just get out of the city for a few days. But lately every time I think there is going to be a window of opportunity for travel, someone or something robs that chance, leaving my hope distended with disappointment. I don't like living in that kind of a cycle. In fact, over the last few years, I've learned to compete with it by adopting spontaneity as routine. What gets planned often gets foiled. But if I can take off as soon as an opportunity presents, then I'm gone before anything or anyone can steal that chance!

Last weekend, I was suppose to be out of town at an orchestral Christmas concert; a trip not of my choosing. However, at the last minute the requirement for my presence was dropped and I found myself with a free weekend...... finally. Before anything else could change, I quickly declared myself gone! The closest place for good roads and great scenery away from town is the Texas hill country; about 200 miles for me. So with little time for planning, that is always my 'go to' destination.

There is a cabin between Fredericksburg and Blanco that I can use whenever I want to get away.......... as long as there are no hunters using it. Unfortunately, there were hunters there this weekend. But over the last few months a new house has been going up on the same 600 acres and although not quite finished, the landowner said he'd leave a key for me so that I could use it and whatever appliances and utilities were installed and working at the time. So that is where I headed.

I love coming to this place. 600 acres sitting right on the Blanco River. Even with the drought in the hill country, this section was still flowing.

It’s a pretty drive when I finally exit the highway.

and even more fun once I exit the pavement to get to the land.

Usually I have to wait for Longhorns to get out of the way as I travel across the property, but this weekend, I think they had been moved to an area further back on the land.

In one section dirt turns to pavement for about 1 mile.

When I am here…… I feel like I am on top of the world!

I settled in and then spent some time under the night sky thinking about the previous difficult weeks, the present darkness, and the ride the next day that would set everything right in my mind again for a while. No moon, but plenty of stars! A dark night for the soul.

More later
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Old 12-11-2010, 11:35 AM   #2
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Old 12-11-2010, 11:42 AM   #3
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LOVE that first photo!
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Old 12-11-2010, 12:07 PM   #4
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I'm in for the ride. Subscribed.
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Old 12-11-2010, 12:41 PM   #5
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Peach, you have the best ride reports & photos on all of AdvRider. Subscribed
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Old 12-11-2010, 12:44 PM   #6
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Love those stars!

I'm in.
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Old 12-11-2010, 02:22 PM   #7
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Thanks for coming along. It won't be a long report since I was only gone 2.5 days, and I'm going to get to the point pretty quickly........ but first......a Christmas party to attend tonight. More later.

Until then.....

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Old 12-11-2010, 02:54 PM   #8
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Great shots!! Looks like a wonderful area to ride in.
I'm REALLY curious as to what camera you used and what settings you may have used on the last 2 pics with the stars. Those impressed me the most!

Thanks for sharing!

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Old 12-11-2010, 03:51 PM   #9
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Fantastic photography. I recognize some of those stars. Looking forward to more!

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Old 12-11-2010, 04:45 PM   #10
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Kristi, These two shots really talk to me.... I guess because I love riding the 2-lane blacktops so much, but these are especially great shots !
I've had the fortune of riding the Texas Hill Country during December maybe 5 or 6 times through the years and really enjoy that area. You are
lucky to live only 200 miles from there, it is MUCH farther for me, but worth the travel time.

Ks-Rydr.... Two-lane blacktop isn't a highway, it's an attitude !
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Old 12-11-2010, 06:37 PM   #11
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Love the intro. Great pics!
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Old 12-11-2010, 08:16 PM   #12
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In while it lasts!

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Old 12-12-2010, 05:16 AM   #13
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very nice, so far
can't wait to read more
thanks for taking us along
TEXAS HILL COUNTRY.... still haven't seen it in person
this thread and your wonderful images makes me want to ride there today
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Live life like you mean it... but take your family and friends (and DOGS) along for the "ride"
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Old 12-12-2010, 05:35 AM   #14
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Where is the Texas hill country? Looks good. What part of texas?
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Old 12-12-2010, 05:40 AM   #15
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The opening words will mean more to some now and to others later in life. I love your reports and this one made me reflect on so many things. Thank you and I hope your little get away provided what you needed.

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