Well! I must admit October has been rough for me, and it always is, if I’m to be honest. As much as I wanted to do a TON of traveling this month my body keeps slamming me. My last little jaunt into the woods, which wasn’t far at all, laid me up for two days afterwards, and although I feel great today I knew I shouldn’t be pushing it. That’s why instead of hiking up Pack Monadnock like I’d prefer I instead decided to be a total sissy and drive the auto road, taking my foliage photos mostly from the parking lot. That being said I had a blast!
Right off the bat I had the guy at the toll gate laughing at me as I handed over my four dollars (I summarized my desire to just drive up to the summit for a few snaps, but I guess in a humorous way. I often have no idea I’m being funny but that’s the joy of life, isn’t it?) From there the drive up the mountain was one long groan coming from the Prius. If that car could talk it’d be screaming, “WHHHHY?! JUST WHHHHHY WOULD YOU DRIVE ME UP A MOUNTAIN?!” Because Daisy is still laid up. That’s why. When I finally reached the parking lot the place was packed! I found one space at the very end and like a pro parked the worst I have ever parked in my life. You know the kind of parking an old lady would do while plowing through someone’s front porch… This happens every time I know I am being watched by strangers. I couldn’t save face so I just hopped out and owned it. “WOW, why do I suck so bad at this?! Let me try again!” I was guided in by a nice hippie gentleman who I conversed with for a few minutes. I gave him the impression I was young and new at driving, though not intentionally. My way of not dying of embarrassment I suppose.
From here I skipped about trying to figure out why I was here. I saw someone trying to take a selfie and debated whether I should interrupt and ask if he’d like me to take a photo. I decided since I’d have to cut across the parking lot to do so this might be a little socially aggressive. Next time though… totally crashing the selfie party…
I was a bit sad to find visibility today was really poor even though the foliage wasn’t half bad. Figuring that out I decided to check out some trails. The trails were scattered and strange. Immediately, while I was still a bit skittish from parking, a group of college kids asked me if I could take their photo. I obliged and they complimented me on my T-shirts and hair. I smiled and said thank you and had I not been totally overstimulated in that moment maybe I would have held a slightly longer conversation with them but alas! My mind was drawing blanks, a lot of them. It does that.
From here I made my way to the little observation spot that was set up for birds of prey. There was a big grease board denoting which birds had been seen today. I had no idea we had so many damn varieties of hawks. No wonder those little SOBs were so problematic when I had chickens! There were three sightings of eagles today. I had seen my last one a couple weeks ago while driving around Mason somewhere so I knew they were still in the area. People seemed kind of grumpy and bored here so I wandered off to where the vibes were better. I went down a few trails here and there, following some red dots, and got a few more little views. It was a nice mountain and the foliage was great but the visibility today was piss-poor. Too much humidity clouding up around the trees! Ah well, I did try.
After seeing everything I could see trailwise I headed up the stairs to the observatory. I was surprised there wasn’t an additional fee for this. As I was climbing up what felt like rickety stairs (though I’m sure they weren’t) I suddenly realized heights didn’t really bother me anymore. They used to. I wonder when that changed! I did however get a smidge tipsy when the wind kicked up. It whipped through that open observatory and blew my top shirt off my shoulders. SIGH. I took a few snaps and I got to see a completely different view of Mount Monadnock situated in the distance.
I wasn’t up there long. Maybe 45 minutes, an hour, but it was the perfect little outing for today. Just perfect.