For the past 30 years, Palm Springs has been my home at some point during the spring. It began as a traditional week-long spring break to coincide with my mom’s elementary school teaching job. Is has since morphed into a two-month celebration of desert life. Over the years, I have passed out, gambled, lost girlfriends, found girlfriends, golfed, hiked, biked, made friends, made enemies, played tennis, watched tennis, skydived, snowshoed, ridden in a hot air balloon, consumed a gazillion calories, experienced family drama, lounged by pools, shopped, toured galleries, and experienced many cultural events. The one constant on this trip has been my mom and her amazing passion for life. Each year, there is always some unexpected event or theme that becomes the heart of the trip. While the current trip is in its infancy, my first surprise began on day one.
On the first morning as I was preparing to leave for the gym, my 83-year old mom said, “Wait for me. I am coming with you and want to learn how to lift weights this year.” She has made this threat in the past but it quickly dissipates. Not on this trip!
We waltzed into Palm Springs Fitness, filled out the paperwork, and waded into the gymnasium. I am a gym rat so being there is second nature for me. This is new territory for my mom. As we walked towards the lockers, I did notice many of the regular older gents pulling in their guts, sitting a little more upright, and trying to catch the eye of the new hottie. They need to up their game to have any chance.
On the first day, we focused on biceps and chest. We did three sets with ten repetitions for each muscle group. She began by curling ten-pound free weights and then moved to bench pressing the forty-five pound bar. At the end of our first session I was getting ready to leave and she said, “What about our cardio?? I thought you rode these bikes.” Her maiden voyage was thirty minutes on level ten of twenty. I thought we were finally done but she demanded some abdominal work.
At the end of her forth day of lifting she said, “How about we skip the indoor cardio and hike Indian Canyon this afternoon?”
It is my dream to be open to new things throughout all of my remaining upright years. I have an excellent teacher.