Day 71: See more of the world today.

“Take your bus or train one stop too far, then walk and discover everything you normally miss.”

I couldn’t do this today, because I didn’t go to campus today – but I have done this sort of thing in the past. I’ve gotten off a stop too early, I’ve gotten off a stop too late, I walk a mile every day from the station to my office anyway. I’ve even biked the 17 miles from my office back to my car on more than one occasion.

Someday I’ll just ride the train to the end of the line and back, but today is not that day. Today I took a detour of a different sort.

I was driving back from Oklahoma City – more on that tomorrow – along I-35, which goes through the Arbuckle Mountains. There are, as one might expect, a few scenic turnouts along this stretch of highway.

Now, the Arbuckles are scenic in places, but most of those places aren’t visible from the interstate – which is why I don’t stop at the scenic turnouts. Except that I did today.

The problem with scenic turnouts is that they’re basically just parking lots. Sure, you can see some things, but you’re still just standing in a parking lot. This particular parking lot was at the top of a ridge, and there was a decent-sized ravine or gully immediately west of the parking lot (away from the highway), and more ridges and ravines beyond that. There was a barbed-wire fence around the parking lot, keeping travelers safe from nature – but there were no “No Trespassing” signs, and barbed wire has never stopped me before.

I spent ten or fifteen minutes wandering down the hillside into the ravine in a wide, meandering semi-circle, which eventually brought me back up the hill to the other side of the parking lot. It wasn’t really any more scenic – rocks, grass, small trees – but it was nice to walk around in a place that probably never gets walked around in. If I hadn’t been exhausted from moving, and ready to be home, I probably could’ve walked around for an hour or more, over the next ridge and back. I’d have ended up lost, and with a broken leg, and had to spend the night under a tree, and probably would’ve been eaten by a mountain lion.

Maybe next time.

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2 Comments on “Day 71: See more of the world today.”

  1. Becky Clary says:

    Assuming that you were in OKC moving your grandmother and aunt to Texas. That makes you an awesome son in my opinion! Hope you didn’t throw your back out or anything stupid like I would do. I think that’s why the world has awesome sons – to do the heavy lifting.


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