“On the road again…”
The Warden and I recently completed a two week, three city road trip to Florida. Fort Lauderdale, Palm City, and Orlando. The main purpose of our trip was to celebrate my mother-in-law’s 90th birthday. What an amazing life! Nothing was going to keep us from being with her on that day. We also have two sons that live in the Sunshine state, hence the three city tour
But what was I going to do about rowing? I know that I am a little obsessed with my new found passion but, I’m not totally crazy addicted (well maybe a little). If it were a long weekend or even a week long vacation, I wouldn’t sweat it and just work a little harder when I got home. But, we were planning on being away from home for sixteen days. I normally row 4-5 days a week! What would an avid rower do? I know, take your rower with you – so I did.
Our driving plan was to drive halfway, stay one night in Alabama and arrive in Florida the next day. Once we reached the hotel in Alabama (Roll Tide!) I started unpacking the rower from the car to bring up to the room. The conversation went a little like this:
The Warden:“You’re not bringing that thing upstairs are you?”
Me: “Of course I am!”
The Warden: “OMG why? Just leave it in the car.”
Me: “No way!”
The Warden: “Why, nothing is going to happen.”
Me: “What if someone steals the car?”
The Warden: “Then we won’t have a car! That would be worse!”
Me: “No, we could rent a car in like a half an hour but the waiting list for a new rower is 8 weeks!”
The Warden: (Rolls her eyes and shakes her head) “You’re crazy!”
So up to the room it went.
Got it to the room without being spotted by anyone but, the next morning when I was bringing it back to the car (which thankfully didn’t get stolen) I was in the elevator with an elderly woman (yes, more elderly than me) and she was looking at me sideways like I was smuggling a nuclear device out of the hotel. I knew she was curious so I volunteered, “It’s a rowing machine.” “Oh,” she replied, seemingly relieved. Next stop – FLA!
My first time to try rowing outdoors. Not sure why I haven’t done this at home (other than our outdoor space isn’t susceptible to moving the rower out and in). But Florida just seems like a place to row outdoors and what an awesome setting at son #3’s house. I mean who wouldn’t want to row under a tiki hut! At first I was a little nervous about bugs and the heat but, it was all good and really fun!
My mother-in-law’s home. A small and beautiful gated community that has many residents that are between my age and my mother-in-law’s age. The only place to row outdoors here was on her driveway. Still plenty of palm trees and beautiful flowers and landscaping to look at. We spent the bulk of our time here so, I had several opportunities to row. I began to notice that cars were slowing down as they were passing by in curiosity. People out walking for exercise would wave and one older woman raised her fist in the air and yelled out, “Keep going! Every stroke counts!” How right she was! They all count!
Home of son #2. Rowing outdoors here made me notice how much the landscape of Central Florida changes from South Florida, I guess I never gave much thought to that. Still plenty of palm trees but had the benefit of rowing under the shade of a giant oak tree in the front yard. Another great setting for rowing! One drawback though. I got hit several times by falling acorns during my workouts making me think that I was possibly being attacked by some angry squirrels!
After a long, but fun 15 days with our family and an amazing 90th birthday party we were ready to be home. Packed up the Concept 2 and made a straight shot for home – 14 hours! The most exhausting part of the trip, even after all that rowing. But it was an awesome trip and now that I know I can take the rower, I can’t wait to go back!
And of course, I also had to try rowing outside at home!