Monday, November 10, 2014

Just a few miles to Freedom

Because the cellist went back to Maryland in search of career survival I have been doing a lot of mailing.

Frank Zappa tried to warn people what would happen if they chose a career in music. FZ was referring to popular music, but the general idea that it will lead to mental, emotional and financial ruin holds true no matter what. I don't know any musicians who aren't working hard for slim margins, "successful" or not.

Recorded music and a lack of widespread, ongoing music education in schools have led to a culture constantly immersed in music, yet utterly taking it for granted. It comes out when you throw a switch, like turning a tap for the water we also take for granted. It seems simultaneously too hard for the average person to learn and yet so ubiquitous as to have no value. The professionals make it look easy and sound slick. Of course they do. If you can, you should. But if only the aspiring professional ever takes it up, only they will understand what's involved. And besides, making music is fun even if you aren't a professional. It does something for you that the often less than polished sound will not convey.

The few stars who do bring in mega bucks as musicians are the exception. And they're not responsible for more than a bit of the immense amount of music that takes place every day.

But I digress.

Where I live, no post office is convenient. The one that serves my actual zip code is the farthest away of the four I would consider local, at about 8 miles. The closest one is about 4 miles, but it's not a super nice ride. The nicest ride goes to the post office in Freedom, NH. The route I like runs 15 miles round trip.

Freedom is not named for freedom from Great Britain or the general quality so dear to Americans. It's named for freedom from Effingham. In the beginning, Freedom was North Effingham. Apparently, the powers that were in Effingham were such a-holes that their northern suburb broke away, using the Ossipee River as a natural boundary and moat. Either that or the Effinghamians were such coarse louts that the refined Freedomites simply couldn't bear to associate with them. I have not read up on it.

My route goes into Freedom on Loon Lake Road, past a tree I used to try to catch at peak foliage for Rantwick's foliage contest.
HEY, RANTWICK! Who would've thought that any tree would still have this much pizzazz this late in November?

The route also includes one of my favorite places to conduct a "forestry inspection" when the need arises. In the following clip I go from trail to highway to dirt road in two minutes:
Following the post office stop I headed out a different road to complete the loop. This took me west, into the sun. Sunshine in November and December is basically pointless. It's barely here anyway and it's mostly just blinding.
Sunshine in November is so pointless.
Sunshine in my eyeballs makes me blind.
All I see is spots in front of my face
And they make my way home hard to find...

Shine. Don't shine. Whatever. Come back and see me in late January. Then things really start ramping back up again.

Clear nights, on the other hand, are awesome. Bring on the stars, the moon and the aurora borealis. In the season of long nights the sky has full value when the sun is down, whereas in daylight you can see you're getting remainders of someone else's sunlight.

The route looks like this:

It's a great little ride with few hills for around here.

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