Almost had a friend accompany me today!
Maria is a lovely lady I used to work with at a factory that builds wire harnesses – you know, those dohickeys that car stereos plug into, that route to the speakers and the battery and connect to the controls in the radio?
(Actually, they’re a lot more complex and fascinating than that. Some of the harnesses we built were designed for those huge MN-DoT snowplows to control the plow, raisin and lowering the cargo bed, opening up the gate to let salt and sand out. Others were as simple as a single battery terminal and cable. Ooh, and you know those frozen french fry dispensers at fast food restaurants? The ones where you put the fry basket beneath a chute, tell it what size serving you’re going to cook, and it weighs out and drops the exact amount called for? Yup, we built the wire harnesses for those.)
Anyway. Keeping in touch with the folks a person used to work with has gotten easier with the invention of Facebook, and easier still if you still live in the same area. Maria had heard about my dawn project and wanted to come along for the walk.
Understand, this hike isn’t for everyone. It’s unexpectedly strenuous and takes a while for the first-timer. So I told Maria that the walk would take forty to fifty minutes (adding twenty minutes onto my own regularly-clocked time), and that I’d pick her up about ten to six this morning.
Sometimes all the planning in the world doesn’t get you where you decided to go – at least not how you decided to get there. This morning was chilly and wet and miserable, darned near guarunteed not to have any sun. We didn’t get to the start of the trail until nearly 6:30, and Maria was wearing tennis shoes instead of hiking or winter boots. She slipped several times just starting down the trail and got worried that I would be late for the sunrise, so she decided to head back to the pickup; I gave her the keys and offered to walk her back.
When it was raining on the way in, I should have made an arbitrary decision and said we’d do it some other day. As it was, I found out I can make that 0.86-mile walk in twenty-five minutes. And we talked about it on the way back; next time we’ll plan it a bit better, and for a warmer, clearer morning.