Wednesday, August 21, 2019, was our thirtieth wedding anniversary. My husband and I often lose track of how long we’ve been married. Perhaps it’s because we don’t have children, those biological markers of time passing. Our cats are no help since, on average, they age out at eighteen, and they always overlap.
The best reminder we have of our years together is the aches and pains we’ve both accumulated since we married. The morning of our anniversary, my husband greeted me in the kitchen with slight twists and turns of his torso while I microwaved my neck pad. My husband has three separate and distinct problems with his back, the worst of which is spinal stenosis. I have cervical osteoarthritis and lately have been suffering with torn muscles and cartilage in my left shoulder and left knee. The injuries seem to take much longer to heal than they used to.
Without those aches and pains, we could pretend we’re still in our first decade as a married couple with many more decades to look forward to. Instead, we’re hoping for at least another twenty years, thirty if we’re lucky.
So what did these two old farts do to celebrate their anniversary? Well, they went for a bike ride, of course.
We had planned to go to Gainesville, Florida, to bike the Gainesville-Hawthorne Trail. Our furred kids derailed that plan so we settled for the second best thing: the lower fourteen miles of the St. Marks Historic Railroad State Trail. We could have started further up the trail and logged more miles, but the day promised to be hot and we didn’t want to overdo it. Plus, the lower fourteen are the prettiest miles of the trail.
After stopping at the Wakulla River Park to stretch and gaze at the quiet water, we headed back up and made a slight detour for cold water, hot coffee and bagel sandwiches at The Shack. We usually eat as many calories as we burn.
We’ve had a few intense storms come through the past week, leaving a couple of inches of standing water in the low spots of the trail. On a hot day, those bigger than life puddles are most welcomed.
(Oh, yes, that’s my husband at the end, on the ground, trying to collect bugs to photograph.)
All in all, it was a fun day. I love my blue 1981 Peugeot (bike, not car), and I love that biking is one thing I can do that doesn’t hurt my aging joints.
Marie A Bailey
Writer, blogger, knitter, cat lover, and introvert.