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Rare Air Episode 24 and January 2018 desktop calendar

Scroll way down for an original desktop calendar for January.

Much to our good fortune, we are embarking on yet another new year when our blessings are too numerous to count. Our kids continue to blow our minds as they embrace life in their unique ways and show us true strength and originality, and our loved ones and friends are also persevering and inspiring, far and wide. Looking toward our future adventures, we are excitedly aware of vast treasures to come… and yet, today, these and other fantastic experiences from the past are what fuel my dreams.

Roger’s journal, June 13, 2016: The hike to Ram Head, Saint John

“At the southeastern end of the Salt Pond Bay beach, we found the promised trailhead, and on we went, finding it surprisingly rocky and rugged even in the early going. With red volcanic earth and rocks, every place off the trail had some growth, usually either a tall or short cactus, but also various types of low trees and weeds. The words dry – and scorching hot – absolutely apply, while the vistas to one’s right of the bay and the ocean in the distance are breathtaking.”

“At one point, the trail drops down to a beach covered in rounded dark stones, with white rounded stones evenly mixed in at a ratio of 30:1. We saw that beach below from the trail, and since we were already overheating, we took a side path down to it to take a dip.”

“With that action, we knew we were off track, but looking ahead to the Ram Head isthmus, we could see the trail continuing on its back in the distance. So we decided to follow the beach around and then return to the trail at another point further along. All would have been fine if we would have looked for the well-marked trail, but thinking that we needed to be more determined since we were ‘off the trail,’ we chose an upward path that looked somewhat worn to us. Twenty minutes later, after scampering upward in an exhausting dead end search for the trail, we returned to the beach-side where we had left it, dripping with sweat, feet much abused by Teva sandals that were stretched to their limits of usefulness by the impossible terrain, and generally depleted, especially in my case.

“Anyone who knows my wife will understand how she spirited herself and yours truly onward… and just a little farther along, we found the obvious trailhead back up the hillside. Clearly, this was the official trail; on the return trek, we learned that it did indeed lead down to the beachside and follow it to a point near the initial side-trail we chose. All those who hike to Ram Head traverse essentially the same pathway, but hopefully most avoid our life-draining extracurricular jaunt.”

“Safely back on-track, we trudged onward, using nearly all that was left of our water supply by the time we came to a dip in the road, where the elements appear to be biting into the isthmus and gnawing their way through it. There, we were hammered with the world’s most welcome breeze; without it, I’m not sure I could have made it to the end, which was probably only 1/5 of a mile further along.”

“Within 15 minutes, we were standing atop the Ram Head… the only humans visible from that point at that moment in time, other than those navigating the one or two boats within sight. One thing we did there was try to spot the location of our villa back within St. John’s dramatic green folds bending up from the shoreline.”

“While Beth found the only shade available, sitting down under a three-foot tall tree, I remained in the sun futzing with cameras, eventually capturing another Rare Air minute successfully.”

Featured Video: Rare Air Episode 24

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