I was seriously considering racing the 6 Hours of Briar Chapel in a couple of weeks - and even had a teammate lined up - but after much thought, I've had a change of heart and believe at this point in my life I'd stand to benefit much more from taking an art workshop instead. This was confirmed by a conversation with my potential teammate today who, unbeknownst to me prior, is an artist! While she and I both love to mountain bike and enjoy endurance racing, neither one of us has been training at all nor really even riding much in general lately. Combining that with the fact that this race does not offer a female duo category, we'd have to compete against the men, so this would just end up being a largely recreational ride for us. With all that in mind, we both agreed that since we'd effectively be entering the race merely in order to casually ride the trail, we could do that anytime (with the added bonus of not having to pay an entry fee to basically ride for fun only).
She also mentioned to me that she had taken several art workshops in the past herself, and found they offered immeasurable rewards for anyone looking to hone their skills in drawing and painting. I realize I only began dabbling in art barely four months ago, so my artwork is obviously still very much at the total beginner amateur end of the scale. But true to my impatient nature, I've been feeling like I desperately need some guidance to help me progress. As such, I think the chance to get some hands-on instruction from professionals is something I really can't and shouldn't pass up. And as luck would have it, several art class and workshop opportunities with accomplished artists are coming available here locally in the coming weeks (some coinciding with the timing of the previously mentioned race), so it seems pretty clear to me where my heart is leading.