I’m running two marathons this year. I’ve never run a marathon, so I might be getting ahead of myself. At about 5 weeks into my training, I can safely say that I need to start lifting weights and stretching more, in order to keep my knees up to speed with the miles I’m putting in. It’s not only a physical challenge, but a moral, psychological, and social one. We’ll see how this turns out, but all in all, I am enjoying it.
Bell peppers – green, red, yellow, orange – are versatile and most likely very good for you. One of my favorite workday lunches is an amalgamation of bread, some kind of spread, and a veggie and/or protein on top. Today, it was ciabatta bread, topped with homemade pesto (frozen from last summer) and roasted red, yellow and orange bell peppers. Roasted bell peppers are one of the most rewarding fixings, from a cost/benefit analysis. No exaggeration: wash pepper; cut pepper down each side and on the bottom, into about five pieces; place on cookie sheet; cover with olive oil and salt; place in the middle of the oven under a 500 degree broiler. Take them out, peel the skin off where it’s charred and easily removable, and you have a pretty phenomenal, not to mention colorful, snack.
My lunch was rewarding. Too bad I had to eat it at my desk.
This got me thinking about my Top 4 favorite things to do with bell peppers:
1. Crudite, with a spicy dip
2. Roasted (woop woop!)
3. Stuffed with rice and/or meat
4. Pepper, onion and avocado salad
Steve and I couldn’t figure out where to spend our three day Memorial Day weekend. Not on the Front Range, not too far from Colorado… We had debated the Picketwire Canyonlands, in the vicinity of the Comanche National Grasslands. That area has some of the oldest dinosaur fossils in the world and would be fun to hike and camp. We decided, though, to head to Crested Butte with two other couples to hike, mountain bike and watch our friend Kris race in the Gunnisson Growler.
The weather forecast was rain, rain, rain. That’s ok! Adventure! I love road trips because you don’t have to worry about filling those ridiculously small travel containers of shampoo, pulling a deltoid because you refuse to check your luggage and haul it all through security, or cram your purse and laptop under the seat in front of you. Not to mention the planning part. On a road trip, there’s minimal planning involved. You can shove your stuff in the back of the Jeep and take off. I’m especially lucky because I don’t have to drive. Anyway, Steve, Schivonne, Kris and I shoved in our four mountain bikes, two tents, four mats, four sleeping bags, four backpacks, one cooler, numerous 6-packs of beer, four camping chairs, blankets, pillows, fly rods, and other camping necessities. Emphasis on shove!
So on the road, eating pasta salad and cookies, we sang songs and shared dark secrets. You can’t do that on a plane – someone will inevitably hear you. It rained our entire trip down to CB, and was still raining when we arrived at our camp spot, at 10:00 p.m. We rolled up to our secret camping spot on National Forest land, right outside of Crested Butte. We were still excited about camping, completely dry, and didn’t mind setting up camp and bearing with the weather. (Kind of like how you can always tell that a waitress is new – she’s still smiling, eager to help, and happy to be there.) So we slid in the mud, slipped on corn lilies, and set up camp. It was still raining.