Saturday, January 2, 2010

Between a Wok and a Hard Place

I'm not closing the door on my break from rock climbing. I'm slamming it. Last night, I finally emerged from a climbing hiatus after four months keeping my feet on the ground. Maybe it was being out of my routine so long, maybe I just needed to switch gears ... whatever the reason, I simply can't do without it for that long, ever again.

My friend, Brandy, and I spent the afternoon recovering from New Year's Eve and got ourselves up to The Rock Club in New Rochelle (only 20 minute train from Grand Central, but THE nicest people climb there so it's worth leaving the city).

My arms have turned back into spaghetti noodles and I was pumped out after a warmup of traversing around the main wall. Out of shape? Yes. The wonderful thing about climbing is that it's always fun, even when you're really bad at it or having an off-day. (To really see an off-day, check out my videos at the bottom- anyone know how I can turn them sideways?)

Best of all, I got to see a bunch of my buddies, including the hilarious Alex, boulder extraordinaire:

He always maps out his routes, excellent planner that he is. Brandy had taken a bit of a break as well, but her climbing still looks great! I always climb better when my partner is at my level or better- it really keeps me motivated.

As always, we were starving afterwards. We headed to our friend's house for some grub. Brandy likes healthy food. I need something that's going to stick to my ribs after a big workout. We reached a happy medium with steak and vegetable stir-fry over rice. It's quick if you are in a pinch for time and grab a frozen veggie mix and meat already sliced. Thank you to whoever invented minute rice- this group of hungry climbers didn't have an extra minute to spare waiting for dinner!
Best of all, I got to cook in our friend Richie's kitchen, which had a professional 6-burner range and a huge wok, well-seasoned. I love to cook in other people's kitchens and pretend they're my own. I have a tendency to take over. (Some would even call me domineering.)

When I thought the night couldn't get any better, we grabbed some beers and headed for the hot tub outside, while it lightly snowed over us.

Climbing, cooking in someone else's kitchen, beer, friends, laughing, and a hot tub. It's like the best of all possible worlds collided into one perfect evening. I can't think of a better way to spend the first day of the year.

First boulder back! And first video uploaded to Blogger.

Will she make it?

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