A Travellerspoint blog

Entries about travel

Sliced and Diced.

My people. My passion. My path

sunny 50 °F

The Scene

When: 11:30pm. 5 hours before scheduled arrival time to hospital

Where: The streets of Boston, North End.

Who: Three of my nearest and dearest, who took me out, made me laugh and snuggled all over me - keeping me happy and distracted the night before my surgery.

Dialogue: "Wait. Umm...It looks like Umass Medical Memorial Campus is not here in Boston, it's uhhhh.....back in Worchester*."
"What. The. Fuck. How do I not know what CITY my surgery is scheduled in!?" "Seriously. You can't make this shit up"

  • for the CO crew it is pronounced 'Wooster'

So. We laughed a bit, set our alarms for even earlier in the wee hours and hunkered down for a couple hours of sleep before driving back in the direction I had started in. Navigation has never been a strong suit. Always thankful for old friends and new beginnings.

Anyways. I made it where I needed to be, for when I needed to be there, and by 7:30am I was laughing hysterically, in a super sexy hospital johnny asking the birth dates of everyone on my surgical team...then came 'lights out'. By 10am I was groggy, repaired and EXHAUSTED.

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  • rest easy, just a little cornea irritation warranted this bad ass eye patch.

Now. Other stuff.

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Summer turned into fall.

Had some big realizations of what it is that I love doing, and the direction I want to go. I also remembered that the people in my life are the best kind of friends because where we are just doesn't matter...Colorado, Massachusetts, Anywhere in between, If it's been 4 months or 14 years, somethings never change and that is amazing. Priceless.
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I learned a lot, lead a lot, grew a lot.

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Early Morning Meeting

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Kennebec River Trip.
Outdoor Wilderness Leaders 'Start the Year Off Right Trip'

Afternoon Commute

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Kayaking Day Camp Program

Business Trip

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Different office, Different day
NAUI Scuba Instructor Course

Oh. And.
This happened, and now I need to learn to sail.
The power, pulse and peacefulness of the ocean is where I feel at home.
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Hmm...I wonder if I know anyone who can teach a girl to sail..

Quote of the moment:
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Countdown:
Embracing each day as it comes. Countdown free. But, I mean technically....if we WERE going to be counting down something it would likely be Surfing in Panama. And in that case it's 3,352 hours. #recovertosurf

Cheers to peace, patience and recovering little by little
Aubs

Posted by AubreyJ 03:28 Archived in USA Tagged me landscapes beaches art home nature beach travel airport fun family massachusetts friendship boating coffee competition hospital fitness action strength laughter surgery repair quotes dreams inspiration recovery introspection leadership fantasy inspire motivation choices best_friends east_coast caffeine being_scared being_strong instincts emotional_wellbeing athlete_problems funny_story umass labral hips Comments (0)

Rock & Roll - Sun & Snow

Juggling Balls & Dodging Needles

sunny 20 °F

December & January

Three Places. Three Take-A-Ways
1. Canada for Christmas.
Pepe: "How happy are you on a scale of 1-10?"
Me: " A 12" (When my Pepe asked me about RJ) I'd say that accurately sums up that trip.

2. Massachusetts. I'm thankful that no matter how long (or short) my visits back home are, Nick and I never fail to have a long run and a coffee together. This time around we had to forgo the quality of Mrs. Murphys and settle for a Dunks in the truck, but it was great. "Dunks in the truck" Hmm....I feel like I'm knocking on the door of an epic hip hop jam.

3. Bonaire. I don't get to spend nearly enough time with my mom & dad. The week was spent with lot's of time blowing bubbles, open water swimming and just one quick trip to the Emergency Room.
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Now that the summary is out of the way. Let's take a peak at the present.
And Yes, I know, that was not the most worthy summary to encompass these past couple months.

Balls.
I recently realized that I might have too many balls in the air.
Too much going on, too many responsibilities, too many people waiting on me for something....
So. I'm streamlining. Embracing the selfish and remembering that this year is about creating a career.

Needles
I was all prepared to go get my MRI on last week....going to the hospital with out my mom or a significant other was a new experience. After the mornings power test on the bike I was totally prepared to be tough. Then I found out that the contrast dye needed to be injected directly into my hip joint via the monster daddy of all syringes. Phew. That was a curve ball. With tears streaming down my face I made continuous jokes with the doctor in effort to diffuse my own anxiety. Ultimately, I survived unscathed.

Next, it was time to enter the 'waiting period' AKA call imaging department every 2 hours over the next 36 hours. You know what they say, the squeaky wheel gets the fastest radiologist reading.
Results: Not ideal but not the end of the world. Doing my best to stay on track until we figure out the next step....even though sometimes I just want to run away back to Bonaire and never look back.

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When we do have to be inside, thankful for the Apex crew.
Resources. Inspiration. Friendship. Goals

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Winter has finally arrived in Boulder but I am ready for summer.

Cheers to peace, overcoming obstacles and comfy clothes,
~Aubs

Posted by AubreyJ 16:44 Archived in USA Tagged beaches snow home nature beach travel colorado new year family run swimming massachusetts living bike friendship cycling health running strength healthy independence dreams inspiration triathlon inspire motivation choices progress east_coast growing_up multisport. caffeine being_scared being_strong live_big trainining open_water_swimming swim_bike_run athlete_problems open_water Comments (0)

What happens in Key West stays in Key West.

Actually, No. These memories will last a lifetime.

sunny 65 °F

First: Little Tidbits Of Travel

Assorted airports and assorted quotes that sums up 6 flights. Yes, it took 6 different planes to get to and from Key West.

TEXAS:
“Name one food you can’t put bacon on and it will taste better”

Q: May I just have an omelet with all the veggie options you have?
A: Well, we can do onions and bacon.
Q: Umm…let’s skip the bacon, and how about some of the other options from other places on the menu…peppers,,,broccoli
A: Ok. onions, tomato and bacon
Thought: We aren’t in boulder anymore Toto.

DENVER:
“I’ve just found this to be a good use of time while I’m waiting to board….”
-Says the man who is (literally) bicep curling his carryon bag.

MIAMI:
“Awwwww hell no….I did not just only bring my short lashes” <crisis mode voice> Says the woman gluing eyelashes on in the public bathroom.

Shuttle 1 of 4:
“Insert Video Clip Here (If I had one)” Of the shuttle driver belting out some pretty intense ‘praise to the kingdom’ ‘amen’ ‘hallejuigh, love thy savior’ jams at 3:45am. #americanidolworthy #myfillofreligionfortheyear

SILLY LIFE OBSERVATIONS:

1. Dear You: Just take the entire cookie. Because you know when you break it in half, and leave one half behind….It is only a matter of time until you go back, break that half in half and….Seriously ¾ of a cookie!? Who does that. (Yeahh…you know you do…it’s ok, we all do)

2.Your ‘delicates’ and ‘tech clothes’ getting hung to dry is a direct reflection as to how much spare time you have on laundry day. AKA, I’ve got 90 seconds before I have to leave…screw it it’s all going in the dryer.

METAPHORICALLY SPEAKING….

Life is a river...It is not a straight line.
Don't take yourself too seriously. Have fun. Be silly.
Being scared is ok, it means you care.
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In kayaking we would rate rivers by class, but not just the rapid itself. A section could be “Class IV” for example, but with “class V” consequences. Meaning there was something about the rapid that if you were to get into a bad spot the repercussions were more dangerous than the technical skills required to get through. Maybe there were under cut rocks, or some strainers (downed trees) Before putting in it all comes down to, “Is it worth it?” ”Is it worth the risk”. You would make that decision knowing that once you dropped in, you were committed to paddle your little butt to the best of your ability, and have an intense amount of fun while doing it….because something about the sport brings you great joy.
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Maybe it’s inexplicable. Maybe it doesn’t make sense to you all the time. Perhaps when you think about it you can’t pin point the how or the why it makes you so happy. Why are you wiling to devote so much time to the river?

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I've been thinking about how scary and confusing it can be to begin to let someone into your life, and into your heart…..like on the river, there is a similar level of uncertainty..of risk. It is something that takes time, energy and commitment to make forward progress. Maybe sometimes in life we need to stop all the calculating and just drop into the river, not knowing exactly what each rapid ahead holds…but knowing that at the end of the day it is worth it…because being there brings you great joy and that is enough.
#LifeIsARiver #GoGetWet

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Quote Of The Moment

"We are all afraid to say too much, to feel too deeply, to let people know what they mean to us. Caring is not synonymous with crazy. Expressing to someone how special they are to you will make you vulnerable. There is no denying that. However, that is nothing to be ashamed of. There is something breathtakingly beautiful in the moments of smaller magic that occur when you strip down and are honest with those who are important to you. Let that someone know that they inspire you. Tell your mother you love her in front of your friends. Express, express, express. Open yourself up, do not harden yourself to the world, and be bold in who, and how, you love. There is courage in that." #MakeYourOwnPath #BeBold #BeBrilliant #NeverSettle

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Key West Tri

I created a roller-coaster for myself the week leading into this trip. Understatement. Debating on whether I want to race, whether I wanted to go, dreading travel, totally fighting getting sick, and just feeling 'off'.

When push came to shove / it came time for the aircraft doors to close….I stayed in my seat, found a big smile and got ready for a 12 hour travel adventure.

My hesitations about traveling were quickly resolved as soon as I found myself in RJs arms at the Miami airport. Feeling sick lingered, and not wanting to race hung around even longer…essentially right up until the gun went off.

I told myself that there are going to be days where my mind just doesn’t want to show up, and you need to make yourself race well and get over it. So, the day became about finding focus, finding good form and having fun. 3 successful missions. I had the 2nd fastest swim out of the men and women, 14th fastest bike and 3rd fasted run. Playing catch up to the boys and placing 3rd overall , 1st out of the women. It was a tiny race, 500 people total but just like all the races I’ve done this year it became a good learning / building block for next season.
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In some ways it was a confidence boost and in many others a reality check…..I realize the amount of work, progress and improvement that needs to happen. I also realize that I am on a time sensitive path, and with how high I am reaching I can’t afford to waste time, energy or resources. I feel pretty lucky to be surrounded by such a supportive network at home and abroad….

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That night we tore it up in the streets as a band played downtown Key West,. A couple of lone dancers we were as everyone else stood on the curb, head bobbing and foot-tapping with enthusiasm along to the music. Super lame. They were missing out, not us ; ) We were (per usual) just a couple of crazy kids, out to have a good time and make the most of our time together.

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The next day I woke up early to ride and then the four of us (RJ & his folks) spent the day snorkeling, kayaking, sailing, and playing in the ocean. Oh and we went para-sailing, no big deal ; ) It was the “ultimate adventure day” – literally. That is what the package was called….and appropriately named for sure. Saw a turtle and reef shark while snorkeling, got me excited to do some diving in Bonaire next month.

I suppose that is enough for today…since my battery is about kicked.

Quote of the Moment:
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Cheers to sunrise rides, caring deeply and laughing until it hurts,
Aubs

Posted by AubreyJ 06:04 Archived in USA Tagged me mountains beaches home beach travel vacation colorado airport sunrise friends kayaking fun family run share men living bike friendship cycling airports traveling training competition boulder fitness action running strength racing laughter independence whitewater baggage races quotes dreams flor learning goals inspiration triathlon fantasy motivation choices multisport. caffeine being_scared being_strong random_facts bike_racing instincts live_big race_day emotional_wellbeing open_water_swimming self_reflection swim_bike_run athlete_problems open_water funny_story Comments (1)

A Month of Ontario & Kentucky

I clearly have a knack for picking the most exotic travel destinations...

semi-overcast 40 °F

As I write this I am jamming out pretty hard to what might be the most random I-Tunes mix this side of the Mississippi. We’re talking Steve Winwood, Eminem, and One Republic, over to Florida Georgia Line, The Naked and Famous and Lorde. It’s a flat out rock out. Good thing I am in my own row of seats and don’t care what other people think about my seated, head bobbing dance moves. Looking around, everyone else on this flight is thoroughly agitated. We were delayed in Lexington for 3 hours, which means everyone missed their connecting flights. But ya know, it happens…it’s out of your control and personally I’d rather sit in an airport with a broken plane that is getting fixed over taking that broken plane out for a cruise. Bring on the delays.

Backing Up. Yes, I said Lexington. Why you ask? Well, why not!? Nell and I ventured to horse racing country to take the USAT Level I coaching certification course. Content wise it was better than I anticipated over all…however, holy shit…let me tell you….being in a room with 38 other triathletes …specifically long course triathletes (because let’s be real, they are a whole different breed) was a very "interesting" experience.
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Question: “How do you tell if someone is an IronMan athlete?”
Answer: “You don’t have to….they will tell you.”

There got to be a point each day where it seemed like the flow of ‘questions’ being asked were simply people wanting to state their 1. Personal Race Resume (as if their M-dot branded shirts, bags, hats and jackets were leaving us guessing in the first place) or 2. Show much they know about the latest and greatest coaching techniques, current trends or gadgets. The presenters were pretty amazing and for the most part pulled the rug out when things were heading in that hope-less direction.

Had a few good runs while in town, and got into a pool twice (for free!) Always a win. Traveling without interrupting training too much seems to come easier and easier, it just takes a little homework in advance.

Backing up even more. Because Kentucky only encompasses 3 days of travel, when I have actually been on the go for more than 3 weeks. I am playing a new game this year…it is called it “How much time can you spend in Canada before the year is out?” It’s actually become a favorite game, since RJ and I just seem to have so much damn fun together. I learned quite a bit this time around…..Are you ready for it?

1. Lesson Number One.
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2. It is called “Grey-Bruce Peninsula” for a reason. Days of sunshine over a three week period= 4. Not joking.

3. It can be as grey, wet and cold as it wants to…(See #1) But Port Elgin is still absolutely beautiful. *It’s growing on me quite a bit.

4. A place feels a bit more homey to me when I have the following three things
a. A mom and pop coffee shop that I venture to daily...or close to it.
b. Set bike routes that are the no brainer go-to for certain sessions.
c. Someone who kisses me Good night & Good Morning. #simplethings

5. I am capable of more than I give myself credit for. Surrounding myself with people, friends and family who push me might be the best thing I can do. Thankful for having some pretty amazing people in my life. #FriendsAreTheFamilyYouChoose
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6. My mom speaking in a British accent goes in my “Top 10 greatest things ever” Vault.

7. Despite what the news tells you…there are still kind people out there. The genuinely kind, want to help you, love you, keep you safe, laugh with you, dream with you, and travel with you kind of kind people. When you find friendships or relationships like that, thank your lucky stars.

8. My style of loading the dishwasher AKA the most illogical, chaotic, jam-packed disastrous mess comes from my mom.

9. You make time for the things that matter. Period. And sometimes what matters is a ridiculous night out with your girl.
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10. My “gotta have it, strip down at mach 5 speed to wear it, comfy outfit” is a 5 year old pair of tattered Westfield State College sweat pants and a (literally) 10 year old cut-up, hole in the arm pit shirt from my paddling days in Costa Rica. #NotSexy #DontCare

11. YOU (Well, specially I mean Nell, but yes, you too dearest Blog reader) You deserve everything you have, the opportunities you have taken, the fun adventures you’ve gone on, the love you’ve found all around you and the goals you are working toward….and the best part of all of that is,,,it is really all just beginning. #BF4evaaa #Goals #LifeIsMadeForFun #NeverSettle #EverythingWorksOut #HashtagsMakeItMoreLegit
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12. Getting a good nights sleep is worth more than gold.

13. If the human body is 75% water…my other 25% is likely comprised of almond butter.

On a completely separate side-note shout out: For all you super fast, super active, super awesome athletes in the Boulder area….If you need to get yourself 1. Back to living the Injury Free life or 2. Address any of those little miserable trouble spots that tend to flare up….NOW IS THE TIME! And the guy to get the job done is hands down Tracy Byarlay over at Rally Sport Health & Fitness. #HealingHands #Seriously

Countdown:

Key West Sprint: 2 weeks, 6 days

Quote of the Moment:

As long as you are passionate about your vision, you should keep moving forward
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Helllloooooo Wonderful

If you are looking for the best coffee in Boulder....look no further. Seriously. It's good. AND their support is making a big part of my 2015 race season possible. If you like being active, racing, espresso or me...stop in and say hi to these guys. I can't thank them enough for all they do...#SupportBusinessesThatSupportOurSport
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Here’s to peace, getting ducks in a row, and frequent flyer miles,
Aubs

Posted by AubreyJ 18:33 Archived in USA Tagged me beaches home travel vacation airport friends fun family events bike friendship cycling airports preparation coffee traveling training fitness action strength laughter dreams learning goals inspiration recovery triathlon fantasy motivation choices best_friends progress multisport. caffeine priorities being_strong live_big open_water_swimming swim_bike_run athlete_problems open_water Comments (0)

I'm Officially Going Nuts..

..with a little help from an amazing new sponsor!

sunny 55 °F

Changing of seasons is a great time to take a step back and do some self reflection. As the landscape around you changes, look at how you have changed and GROWN over the past weeks, months, years. One of the greatest gifts of life is that we are constantly presented with new opportunities. Opportunities to change, or stay the same. Opportunities to embrace your own successes and share in those successes of others.

A few months ago I stumbled upon a companies "mission statement" - I had tried their product before (courtesy of good friend and amazingly talented swimmer, Christine Jennings) so I already knew they were 'to die for delicious'....but what really got me hooked was reading about their values and outlook on life. I thought "YES! This is what it is all about!"

So. If you like nut butter...hang on to your boots because you have no idea how good it can really be.
With that warm introduction, I introduce you to KOLAT SUPERFOODS! #boom

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Five for Friday

My fav 5 from KOLATs Manifesto...and of course my little ramblings as to why they are my favorite.

BE UNCOMFORTABLE
take risks and find comfort in the discomfort, for this is the only way you grow. *As an athlete this place of discomfort in a strange way almost brings comfort. Push yourself to new places, you might like the view.

BE TRUSTING
all is perfect as it is, everything happens in its own time when the conditions are right, trust in this; of yourself, you are capable of handling anything that comes your way; of life–happiness does not depend on anything outside of yourself. *This one reminds me of my moms advice 'listen to your gut, trust your instincts' Our body has a way of knowing perhaps more than our mind allows us to see...trust your heart, and create the life you have imagined.

BE CURIOUS
seek knowledge, seek truth; view others as if they were a gift, waiting to be discovered and listen intently. *Family is family, they are your number one, your backbone. Friends are the family you choose. Strangers could become your newest friends. Be thankful for those in your life, and open to those who might walk in when you least expect it.

BE DETERMINED
never settle, never give up, setbacks are just a universal test to see how badly you truly want it and how far you are willing to go to make it happen;
success comes to those who are willing to fail many times & adjust their strategy along the way; when told you cannot, let that be a driving force to prove that you can; have an unshakable belief in yourself. *I have a quote taped to my fridge that says 'When she undoubtedly believed, everything became possible'. You are your own CEO, with limitless potential...and it's up to you to realize that.

BE EXTRAORDINARY
dream big, you have the power to create what ever it is you truly desire; do the impossible and when you are told it is, know that there is always a way, it just hasn’t been done yet; be the exception, be a visionary, be a pioneer. *There is nothing better than hearing "you can't do it" or "you won't make it"....it's all fuel for the fire baby. Whatever 'it' is, you should do it.

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In Other News...

At The Gym. WTF

There are certain things that just baffle the hell out of me.
Maybe you can share some insight as to why people do the things they do.

1. Why is there a huge population of older women who choose to put body lotion on while in the sauna? I feel like this would be nothing but the most unpleasant and sweaty experience.

2. In an entirely empty locker room, as I have my 3-sport life sprawled over the bench and the floor....why would you choose the locker immediately next to mine? I get that we are creatures of habit...but seriously, live on the edge. #StopSteppingOnMyShit

3. The things I have seen people doing with free weights as of late has grown scary. Literally doing the YMCA with dumbells. #wtf

4. Dear Crossfit Man: You are still my favorite. Please continue to walk around with your gallon of water, ripped t-shirt (because your biceps are clearly too big for sleeves) and do some of those kipping pull-ups. So hot. #sarcasm.

Training and Such

Getting back to the grind this month. AND LOVING IT! It certainly doesn't feel good to realize the loss of fitness that occurred after season end....or the affect of one (or nine) too many icecream and wine nights....but here we are, October, and with a serious sense of direction! #patience #progress #potential.

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Well. Folks. There you have it.
Grab a spoonful of KOLAT Superfood (I am digging the Blueberry Cinnamon Walnut these days) and do whatever it is you do...and do it well!

And because sometimes you just need to eat some sushi and watch a whole lot of zombies.
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Cheers to peace, the icing on the cake and big visions for 2015,
Aubs

Posted by AubreyJ 15:06 Archived in Canada Tagged home travel colorado friends fruit fun family share bike friendship cycling coffee training competition resting boulder fitness action nutrition laughter independence dreams goals inspiration recovery triathlon stretch inspire motivation choices best_friends people_watching progress almonds priorities bike_racing live_big self_reflection swim_bike_run athlete_problems nut_butter sponsorship healthy_fats Comments (0)

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