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22 September 2010 @ 06:13 pm
I really really really didn't want to go for a hike today, but: 1. it was absolutely gorgeous outside and 2. I really really really want to lose this inner tube of jiggle that has taken over my body from waist to knee get into better shape. Could've skated again, could've gone kickboxing, could've gone for a *shudder* run. In spite of my body's reticence, my brain was set on getting my butt on the trail.

So, I hit the Stairway to Heaven and decided to push through to the top. I was huffing and out of breath by the time I reached the Ent's Last Stand (confession: I name places. terribly Anne-ish, I know, though she probably didn't name a section of her roller blading route after a YA zombie novel). Scooted around a couple who had stopped to check their email, encountered a quartet of almost-elderly women with ski poles working their way back down (they totally cheered me on and were in all other ways adorable. I intend to age with such awesomeness) and only stopped to catch my breath right before the final, horrible push.

Once I reached the cairns, I decided to press on to the old AT vista. I've never been. The path is lightly used, completely unmarked and, after about half a mile, nonexistent. Not keen on wandering aimlessly through the woods, I turned around and headed back for the new AT vista with it's clearly marked path and ever changing cast of cairns.

It was utterly unpeopled, for which I was grateful. I plopped down, gulped a bit of water, and witnessed a turkey vulture at very close range. Seriously, it was not ten feet away as it swooped past. It was joined shortly thereafter by two buddies, one of whom did the coolest quick flip thing. "DO IT AGAIN!" I shouted, clapping.

I wish I were kidding.

The vultures flew off and I - alone on a mountain top and with 3G available - tweeted the experience, complete with my longing to see the maneuver once more.

I repeat: I wish I were kidding.

The moment I pressed send, the birds came back. Dude did the flippy thing.

And that, that right there, is the reason I absolutely had to be on that mountain today. I needed to know who I really am, deep inside.

I am the Vulture Whisperer.
pheylanpheylan on September 22nd, 2010 11:18 pm (UTC)
Cool! We get turkey vultures nesting on the tops of our two tall dorms (tall enough that you can see them from any approach to Denton well before you can see the town). The maintenance people keep trying to chase them off with noises and such, but they always come back. I kinda cheer at that. I know they are leaving a mess on the balconies of the students, but, darnit, you've come to a fairly rural town to go to college, you should experience wildlife more interesting than squirrels.
If they try to chase them off again, I'll let them know about you. Don't worry, I'll set your fee high and insist on travel fare and a room in the cool little B&B just off campus.
Kel: awesomesauce!ladyjoust on September 22nd, 2010 11:27 pm (UTC)
I approve of this plan!

I also like that this opens up a career path of charlatan/huckster that has been heretofore unexplored. Not that I'm not the real deal, of course...
pheylanpheylan on September 22nd, 2010 11:49 pm (UTC)
It's okay. We know your not a real charlatan.
La Petite Souris Scientifiquemelebeth on September 22nd, 2010 11:25 pm (UTC)
That's fabulous.
formerlyfbformerlyfb on September 23rd, 2010 01:29 am (UTC)
There are few things cooler than listening to that inner voice; and getting such wonderful confirmation as to why!
Ratesjul: brain spinningratesjul on September 23rd, 2010 07:34 am (UTC)
There are FAR worse things than to be Anneish and name places...
Fjordhopper: Autumn Mistfjordhopper on September 23rd, 2010 09:49 am (UTC)

(and by that I do mean that i am full of awe at your amazing Vulture powers!!)