Went hiking up Runyon Canyon the other morning. As I do on many mornings, and each time it's so different up there. Last week, I ascended through thick thick clouds, and then, almost to the top, I stepped out of the clouds like a curtain and the sky was spotlessly blue and clear and the sun was shining so brightly and it was just me and the crows in a warm pocket of blue and yellow on a grey dance floor. Like it's own small world, the top of a mountain and a bright sunny sky. And two feet below, the thickest ocean of clouds, forever, endless, nothing but clouds and the tippy tops of a couple of buildings downtown trying to break through.
Such serenity up there. Which most people don't experience on that hike as it's basically LA traffic expressed in humans and dogs instead of cars. It makes sense, though, since the hiking trail juts right out of Hollywood up to Mulholland Drive. So many people, lucky to have a hiking trail in the very heart of the city. Or, at least, I always feel lucky about it. And it definitely deserves its own post by me, as it is my meditation, my therapy, my endorphin fix, source of energy, release and sweaty clarity.
For me, it's never too crowded. I usually go so early in the morning, there are very few other people. Those I did pass that day above the clouds, well, they must have thought I was a little bit crazy because I was so unabashedly joyous and was not afraid to let them in on it. So it was me, running and skipping past people saying, It's like Runyon Heaven up here! Isn't it just gorgeous up here this morning?! I bet we'll never see it like this again! It's soooo beautiful!
This last morning, well, it's winter, for sure. Started raining. And I love when winter comes. But it's so different now. Though I still love it. Here in LA, winter is fun because we get to wear sweaters and maybe retire the flip-flops and if I'm lucky, it will rain a lot.
But, I guess it's nostalgia that makes me so excited inside when winter arrives and why I love winter so much still, for so many reasons. Because in Colorado, where I'm from, winter means the dawn of skiing and snowboarding and telemarking and snowshoeing and so many of the things I loved to do. The things you have to wait for. And it means inner tubing down the mountains and hot chocolate and fireplaces and very warm blankets and the world covered in blue under the moonlight. It means my dad pulling on my toes to wake me up saying, don't go to school today, it's a powder day! It means tying our sleds to the back of the old Toyota Landcruiser while dad plows the driveway in the morning.
It's gathering snow in a cup and adding milk and sugar and cinnamon and eating it like it's ice cream. And it's glittering snow on the hills, feet and feet deep. And jumping off the roof into that glittering snow laughing. And it's fresh vegetable soup and my mom in fuzzy boots and oatmeal and icy roads and birds perched on fluffy white trees. And mostly, it means being warm and loved and happy.