Finger Strength

The end of a long week. Sitting on the couch watching bouldering videos and listening to the song “Loyal” by Odesza. Making black tea. Drinking said tea. Playing the game “Tomb Raider II,” starring the enigmatic Lara Croft. Making forays into the garage to do max hangs on a board screwed into the wall. So far on the two pad setting (which is, incidentally, the only setting, since it’s a 2×6), I can almost do 20 seconds. I know this is not a lot. I am not a strong climber. I am not a TERRIBLE climber, because I’m not super afraid of falling and am quite athletic, but I have next to zero climbing technique and also very little finger strength. I regularly fail on V3’s/V4’s in the gym. But it doesn’t matter. Because I love it. I love it and I have no plans to stop.

I pound a cup of black tea but it’s just not cutting it. I need more caffeine. The Friday afternoon doldrums have set in. It’s almost as if everything has lost its flavor. I’m bored of playing the piano, I’m bored of going on walks, I’m bored of playing video games, I’m bored of watching movies, I’m bored of seeing how long I can hang from a board in my garage. I want to do what I’ve done best all my life: Just get up and go. But since I CAN’T do that right now, I’ll just talk about what I hypothetically would do if I could.

What would I do right now if I could do anything, go anywhere, but of course taking into account current coronavirus closures, social distancing guidelines, the strength of the yen, etc.

First, I would go for a surf. It’s been a long time since I got in the water. Sunday is looking decent. Monday, too. So I’d do that. Then I’d come back, spend another week or so on Bainbridge, do one last big grocery run for my parents, and then get out of dodge. And by out of dodge I of course mean I would go to my boat. Where I would spend a few days cleaning it, making it less awful, etc. And then. And then. And then I would head for the mountains in my ’97 Subaru. Or I would go up to the San Juan’s in my boat. The stratosphere is the limit. And then I would head south, stopping at famous bouldering places on the way, until I got to southern California, where I would wait on the northern side of the Mexican border until they opened it and I could finally get across. More bouldering, more surfing. Speaking Spanish. Eating tacos. Some tacos. Smoking a few rollies even, maybe. I’m in Mexico!

Further and further south in my car? Maybe.

Or maybe not. At this point I would make my way back to Washington where I would star The Grand Adventure, aka sailing to South America in my 27 foot sailboat. First night, Port Townsend. Bounce around the San Juans for a bit. Maybe, MAYBE, stop in Victoria. Then round Cape Flattery and start heading south. Stop in La Push. Stop in Westport. Stop in Oregon, and then make the big push for Southern California. Bonfires on the beach, more surfing, and then back into Mexico. A couple weeks in Ensenada. Fixing things that have broken on the boat. Fitting it out for even more sailing, bluewater, bluewater baby, bluewater all the way, all the way to Puerto Vallarta and points further south, anchoring at La Calechosa to surf, anchoring by that little town across the bay and paddling over, that beautiful right point break, oh how she’s beautiful, further and further south, surfing La Ticla, surfing The Ranch, SKIPPING LA SALADITA, and further and futher south, and now we’re in Central America, and Costa Rica, and Panama, and maybe we just say to hell with it and go through the Canal. Into the Caribbean. And that’s it. Why would you need to go any further?