Adventures in life and photography out West

Why not be happy?

Why not? Why not look for the good, for the beautiful, for the awe-inspiring? Why not appropriate the clouds, the rain, the snow? Why not be grateful for time with friends and family instead of dreading the time apart? Why not appreciate what we have right now?

I write this because, when I was in my teens and early twenties, I never imagined this life could be so good. I never thought that I would be married to this beautiful, loyal, loving woman. I never thought I could have a hand in raising such a thoughtful, smart, confident daughter. I never considered that I could work a dream job for more than a decade, fall into another career that allowed me to make a positive mark on so many lives. I never considered that I could be so healthy that I could ride the spine of the continent on a bicycle and enjoy it so much.  All of this is amazing and today I am very grateful for it. What a life. 

This weekend, I get to ride a short “Media Pass” ride ahead of the annual Ride the Rockies. It will be about 25 miles from downtown Denver, out along the Cherry Creek Trail to the reservoir of the same name, and back again. I get to see many of the great people who organize the event, whom I only see a few times a year, and there will be coffee. I love coffee. 

This is all ahead of my favorite week of the year, when I tour Colorado with 2,000 like-minded people, including several cycling luminaries and a lot of amazing scenery. What could be bad?

I’m not suggesting that there are not real problems in the world. I’m just focusing on how good I have it today. No one is bombing my home, my work or my town. No one is kidnapping my child in a misplaced fit of religious fervor. I am not fleeing deplorable living conditions. As a dear friend once pointed out, if we all put our problems on a table and compared them to those of others, most of us would be happy just taking our own problems back. My problems are pretty small, today. I hope yours are, as well. 

For only the second time in my life, I’m on a cycling team. I joined as part of my track racing certification. A buddy of mine is on the team and he invited me to join and to get on the track. That counts as a win-win. I hope to actually race on Memorial Day weekend. It should be lots of fun. I hope to have some images from the event to show off in about two weeks. 

Lots of pro racing going on, if you didn’t already know. The first of the season’s Grand Tours is about halfway through. The Giro d’Italia started in the Netherlands on May 6. Sounds funny, I know. The pros raced for three days before heading down to Italy. Bob Jungels of the Etixx-Quickstep team currently where’s the pink jersey of the race’s leader. 

Meanwhile, in the US, French rider   Julian Alaphilippe, also of the Etixx-Quickstep team, took over the lead of the Amgen Tour of California. World Champ Peter Sagan won the race’s opening stage in a sprint into downtown San Diego. American Ben King won stage two, then relinquished the race lead on The Queen Stage on Tuesday. 

That’s about it, for now. Hope you get a chance to get out and enjoy a ride, and all of your days!

Have fun. Be safe. I’m going riding. 

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