Thursday, May 31, 2012

Happy Birthday Chase !!!!!!!!!!!

last summer's hair cut...
Yep, today is a special day in our house! My youngest one Chase is 12 years old today! Obviously he was born in 2000.

I think that's kinda neat, it makes it easy to keep up with how old you are for sure.

Today he gets his big present and then we are gonna have a little party Saturday. Then we are gonna take him and his buddy Austin to the Bounce House in Charlotte. They are gonna bounce until they drop!

What else would a 12 year old want to do besides play on trampolines!

I think his best present is the fact they only have one more week of school! Summer is here and the pool is warm. We are gonna swim tonight.The kid loves to swim !!!!

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

High's To Low's.....

I started the day reading about my buddy Bruce, he's up in Pennsylvania racing the Trans-Sylvania Epic Mountain Bike Stage Race. This is one of my bucket list items I would like to get to one day.

He did it last year and really did well. This year he is even stronger and really riding well. He has a blog also and is keeping it up to date. check it out if ya have time.

my man Bruce....
Of course I can't mention Bruce without pointing out the fact that I USED TOO be able to beat him...LOL I have no chance in hell of out running him now but 3 years ago I could. Oh well I guess that's my claim to fame.

The funny part is I remember the exact race and the exact spot he passed me for the first time, and beat me. I honestly remember seeing him at the race and thinking "I got him" ...Ha, he hasn't looked back yet, I haven't been able to keep up with him since!

Anyhow he's a great guy and deserves it! I hope he does well this week and comes home with a big trophy and a bag full of swag. Go Bruce!!!!!

Now for the low of the day. I heard about this yesterday, a pedestrian was hit and killed on Sharon Rd in Charlotte. Today I read the paper and found out it was a kid from Myers Park High School. Andrew Wright.

He missed the bus and was riding his bike to school.....I honestly don't know what else to say..To the Wright's I am sorry for your loss...

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Now I Need A Day Off.....

I am Completely worn out! After 3 days of play and the swimming pool. I could have stayed in bed today no problem.

Well the only problem would have been I would have went as hard as I could again. Oh well I can suffer through today and with the rain coming I won't be riding tonight, so rest it will be!

Saturday I went to Poplar Tent and got in a good ride, I was about half way there when it dawned on me it was race weekend, although traffic was no problem. Sunday we did church, lunch and then Sam's.

To the house and out the door! It was kinda late in the afternoon and Sunday and Memorial Day so Sherman was about empty. Toward the end of the lap I ran into my buddies Kelly and Scott, they where going backward looking for me.

That was cool, I haven't seen either one of them lately, and Kelly hasn't been riding since he was attacked by the dog. He had been off the bike for a week. Yet he still had no problem staying in front of me! Scott was on my back wheel riding the brakes, I was the weak link!

I swear I seemed to be stuck in a rut I can go fast and I seem to pass a lot of people when I am out riding, but when I am with the fast boys I suck. I see exactly how bad I am. Well maybe not bad, but just not in race shape.

When I am riding a lot or training, I can let up a little bit as I am riding and let my legs recover as I ride. Right now I am in that spot where it seems I can't recover, it does no good to let up. I am having fun and enjoying the ride I just don't have the snap I need.

Or want, oh well, I guess life is good when you can set around and bitch about playing! I had 3 days off and got to ride everyday. We played in the pool till we are all sun burnt and it was a great weekend.

This coming weekend is Chase's birthday, he will be 12. We are gonna take him and couple of friends to the bounce house. The place with all the trampolines on the walls and floors. Church camp is coming soon and summer is now in full swing.

I even noticed it was still daylight last night when I went out to shut the garage up.

The mountains are calling my name....... 

Friday, May 25, 2012

$70 Bucks,,Is All It Takes...........

Yea! No kidding, I found that out last night. Your never to old to learn a new trick!

$70 bucks that's it!!!!

As I mentioned in the other post, we had a possible Warm Turing cyclist coming through who wanted to stop in for the night. He did.

By the time I got home yesterday he was only 3 miles from the house. He comes down the driveway and I am all pumped expecting to see some high end touring bike with the top of the line bags and all kinda neat shit!

Pete, that's his name. Well Pete is 29 years old and lives in West Palm Beach FL. He works at a summer camp for kids up in West Virginia every year and goes to school in Florida the rest of the year. This is his first tour and he's been on the road for 2 weeks.

See that bike? $70 bucks Craigslist !!! About a buck fifty for his bags! He had a hammock with a bug screen he uses when he camps. A few clothes and his little bit of toiletries. The very basics.....And it works!! Point is, it don't take much!!!

Here we are, he was showing Cody and I how the hammock works! That was neat, of course we had to get in it! Point is anybody can do a bicycle for next to nothing! This guy is traveling around and seeing all kinda stuff. All on a craigslist special!

He put a new cassette on the back with bigger sprockets for the hills and that was the only modification he did. Last fall he got interested in touring and started getting his stuff together. With the plans to ride to the camp this year.

He allowed 3 weeks to do it and is right on schedule. Point is if he can do it so can I. His main navigation is his iPhone and he has been trying to stay at fire departments as much as he can. So far his plan is working out.

I asked him where he planned to stay tonight and he replied "I don't know I will start looking when I get above Salisbury". I could get used to that.......

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Weird !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Last night I had the weirdest ride? No sure what was wrong, if anything. I went to Beatty park to ride a few laps, and I did.

The only thing is I had no drive in me what so ever! No legs for climbing, no legs for going fast, no legs for anything. I rode the easest 2 laps I think I have ever ridden. The only time I seemed to move with any speed what so ever was on the downhills.

I wanted to go, hence the reason I loaded up and went. That's what's got me so puzzled? If I take the time to go I plan on working and making myself push it! This is only the second time in a few months I have even ridden the mtn bike so you would think I would be pumped.

Not! I was as flat as I can remember. No snap, no pop, just me doing one of the laziest rides I swear I have done! Still can't figure it out......

Oh well I can go again, that's what makes it fun!!!!

Now on to other things! A while back I mentioned we were going to have our first cycle tourist stopping by and spending the night. Then they cancelled and we had no guest. Well a guy named Pete called yesterday and he is coming through today.

He was about 20 miles north of Columbia yesterday afternoon and said he would be coming through. That's about 80 miles from my house, in this heat that could be a long day. From where he's at there's a lot of hills to go over to get to my house. If I had to do that ride fully loaded today it would take me all day!

So we'll see, I hope he makes it by, I want to check out his set-up. See if I can learn anything.......

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Something Different..........

Last night we did something a little different. Cody is a really good piano player and he also plays the guitar, he has a Taylor guitar. Believe me when I tell you I am not a guitar freak!

I know a high quality bicycle when I see it but a guitar! They all look alike to me! Now that Cody has started playing them I have learned a few things about them. First of all and most important Taylor is not a cheap toy.

They are really one the top manufactures in the world! Even their low end stuff is nice.

So anyhow they do a promotional tour thing called the Taylor Roadshow. They travel all over the world doing a Q and A session in local music stores. They bring a professional guitarist with them who will play all the different models and answer any questions.

Yes, you can tell a difference when you hear them played back to back, and by someone who knows how to play!

The best part of last night was the fact I really didn't want to go. I just went because that what parents do when they have kids! Guess what I had as much fun as he did and I can't even play a guitar! It was really entertaining and educational all at the same time!

Cody got to play with and handle some high dollar toys! When I say high dollar, I mean high dollar!!! Some guitars can cost more than a car! A LOT more..

I enjoy seeing them and can appreciate the craftsmanship that goes into making them but that's about all I am good for. Cody picked out a new one he is really wanting to get, I might need a part time job to go with the one he's gonna have to get to make that happen... The kid has high standards!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

How about this........

Today we have something I found on the NY bike blog. All I did last night was clean the pool and mow the yard. No matter how I word it that's still a boring evening. I wanted to ride but after my crash Sunday I am still a little sore.

I went over the bars in a rocky section of the trail and bruised myself up pretty good. So I could have put a few pictures on here of me mowing the yard or a few shots of my nasty bruised up leg or hip. I figured I would go with a few facts instead.

No, I have no ideal where they are getting their facts from, don't care either! I just like what they say. If I could change anything I wished I worked closer to the house. With the holiday this weekend and my usual plans to start riding back and forth to work, I would love to be about 5-10 miles max from the house.

That would be about the perfect distance. I could do that without breaking a sweat and I would still enjoy it. 18 miles, your gonna break a sweat! No getting around it! We live in the south and it's humid at 6am I can't change that.

The one alternative is the bus. Charlotte has a Union county connector I could catch and it would put me off about 2 miles from the office. I sent an email yesterday to the Charlotte Transit Authority, so will see. That would have me catching the bus at K-mart in Monroe, 4 miles from the house. Then getting of in Matthews.

I know the bus picks up around 6:30, so that would have my getting off the bus about 7:15. I would have plenty of time to get here and get started. I just need to make the commitment!!!!!

Monday, May 21, 2012

I Needed a Day At Work.............

That's a good weekend when you need work to relax! It came and then it went, the weekend. Plus if we stay busy this week it will be over and then I get 3 days of play.

Memorial day is coming! We "kinda" have plans to go camping over in Southern Pines, but it's not nailed down yet. If I keep my mouth shut we could probably end up staying home. Chase has his birthday Thursday so I know he will want to go somewhere with his buddies.

He would rather stay home I know that. So that's one vote. We'll see.

So why am I tired you ask? Saturday AM Cody worked on the shed, the one he is changing into a chicken house. He seems to think he is gonna raise a bunch of egg layers. If he cleaned his room this good it would be spotless.

He even got up early am Saturday to take a load of trash to the dump. I didn't even think he knew where the dump was! Then he was back at it. Now he needs wire and a couple more 2x4's to finish making lay boxes and he will have it done.

While he was working on that I took off on the road bike. Karen wanted to get a new pair of shoes for the wedding we were going to Saturday night so I had plenty of time to ride. So with no direction in mind I went out the end of the drive and headed toward Matthews.

Why I don't really know, I thought about riding to the bike shop but didn't really plan on going there. So I tried an alternate route to work. Sometimes I will ride to work and I have only went one way. I wanted to see if the other was any shorter. NOT..

It was about 3 miles longer. Mental note, if you already have to ride 17 miles at 6am you don't want to make it 20!

where I work all locked up for the weekend....
So I rode all the way to work turned around and came home. Total 38 miles. I usually start riding back and forth after Memorial Day. So next week I will start.

So then it was a quick nap and time to get ready for a wedding. My friend Larry whom I have worked with for the better part of 20 years, his daughter was getting married.

I remember when she was born! Now she is out of college and married! I must be getting old. They had it at the Daniel Stowe Memorial Gardens. For an outdoor wedding it was perfect weather. Not to hot or humid and the sun was shinning.

Then they had the reception right there. Live band and an open bar, fantastic food, it was a great time! If you didn't have fun at this wedding it was your own fault! I usually hate going to these but this one was a blast!

Followed by a mountain bike ride Sunday and my weekend was complete!

Friday, May 18, 2012

Should I go ??? Or Not.......

Last night I stood in the garage for about an hour plus piddling around asking myself that question. Do I go or not!

It looked like it could rain at any minute! So knowing day light was fading fast I got out the zip-lock bags to protect the phone and hit the road.

I stayed close to my area in case it changed but the rain held off and I got 25 short miles in.

Even staying close to the house I got to see plenty of the fields.

The only thing I came across out of the ordinary would be a bounce house set up in someones driveway on a Thursday night... Seemed out of place to me.

One last thing, checkout Stanley our pet turkey he is getting big! He was hanging out with me while I was trying to decide if I was gonna go or not. He didn't seem to interested though.

Tomorrow am I am gonna hit the road early. No plans just a ride. I might head down to SC, haven't done that in a while.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

It's Almost Over........

The week, I am ready for the end. With the rain every other day and taking my mom to the airport, it's been a weird week.

I haven't been able to ride the motorcycle this week and only one bike ride. So tonight I plan to ride and tomorrow is Friday. Thank god!

Saturday we have a wedding and that's about it for the weekend.

I will get in some riding but have no plans beside that. The best part is the weather is gonna be kick ass.....

Wednesday, May 16, 2012


Yes I did ride last night, Glen came down and we did 35 miles. The rain stayed south of Monroe so we stayed dry! No pictures, just a good ride.......

Not For me................

This morning I had to take my mom to the airport, she is heading out to see family. I work in Matthews and live in Monroe. My commute is 18 miles and about 30 minutes.

All through the country. I have school buses to deal with and that's about it. I have made this trip everyday for 10 years now and from what I see when I take mom to the airport, I would have a hard time dealing with all the Charlotte traffic....

i was going south when I took this....
The traffic headed to Charlotte sucks! You come to a complete stop on 485 and then you inch your way around to 77 then you stop again! 
the drop of area of the airport....

Then you get to the airport and that's a mad house! Or maybe I should say "organized kaos". They actually keep it moving pretty good for the amount of people trying to unload.

I got this as I was trying to leave, the sun is kind of blocking it, but he went right over my head.

So anyhow if I ever change jobs it will be for one going east from my house....

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

How Do They Do It.......

"It" refers to our northern neighbors! If I had to deal with the rain and gloom all day everyday I would go crazy! Nobody would like me, hell I wouldn't even like myself.

Yea, we had decent weather Saturday then Sunday the rain all day. To top it off, yesterday!

I was about to snap!

The only thing saving me this morning is the sunshine! I can see it! Thank god!

Tomorrow I will be on the motorcycle, tonight I will be on the bicycle. Yesterday I swore I was getting sick, all I needed was sunshine. Today I feel like a million bucks!

So anyhow I plan to keep it short today and just thought I would include a picture of grandma with her grandsons.

This is from lunch Sunday. Just for you mom......

Monday, May 14, 2012

It Was Dry.........

Up until last week it starting to get dry around here. Now, it ain't so! We had the rain in the middle of last week and now we are right back at it. We had a nice Saturday, then we had mothers day! Which I enjoyed, we went out and had a nice lunch, had both the moms with us.

They seemed to enjoy themselves and liked the little cards we had gotten them. The gift card will come in handy too. Of course we took care of my wife also. She got a few gift cards and a nice new summer hat! When we hit the beach in a few months she will enjoy the hat for sure!

No, I didn't get in a ride yesterday, I thought about it but just didn't feel like riding in the rain. Looks like the start of the week will stay the same but end with a nice weekend.

We have a wedding to go too Saturday, but besides that I plan on hitting the road. I might even take the mountain bike out! If I do it won't be around here. Chase says he wants to hit the White Water Center so if that holds true I will hit it Saturday am.

Not by choice though!

That's about it today, as of now I am sitting at work watching it rain and waiting for the phone to ring. The rain can make a long day even longer!!!!!!!

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Things Change.............

What things, I guess everything! For the last 3 years, or at least the 2 years prior to to last year we raced everything! I mean everything! Everything that was available to us in our area.

Southern Classic Series, the summer series here in Charlotte and all the one off races 6 hour 12 hour 24 hour, you name it. We where doing it. Me and the kids.

Then change started coming into the picture, Cody started playing high school soccer and Chase he was just along for the ride. He likes to be around all the people at the races but doesn't really care if he races or not. As far as me, well I had the leg injury right before Christmas the year Cody completed his first year of soccer. That set me back further than care to even think about!

Then in Cody's second year of soccer he had his major knee injury and is still only 8 months into rehab for it. So things change.

I would prefer Cody just raced bicycles but then he would be 1 of 2 kids that race bikes at his school. In other words he would kinda be on the outside looking in. Since he started playing soccer he has lettered and is part of school athletics. He likes being part of the team! So I support him and am glad he is enjoying high school.

Chase is just in middle school so his time is coming. Back to me, well I don't want to go to the races by myself and I have a ton of 5 dollar medals and so many trophy's from my youth when I was a kid racing BMX that I was going and competing just so I wasn't standing around all day when they raced.

Yes I enjoyed it and it was great to push my self again and run up front. Yes its still fun to get a medal even when you are 40. Some things never change! But to go by myself, not gonna happen!

So as this years riding season started I have found my self kind of at a loss. I thought about racing and I thought about doing some of the one day races and I thought about all this as I was riding. The first of the year I was pushing myself and trying to get faster, now I find I am just riding!

I was riding the snot out of my mountain bike and now all I ride is the road bike. I find I am taking my time and enjoying the ride more than I was when I all I did was keep my head down and pound out the miles in the name of training!

Yesterday I left the house with the sole purpose of getting lost, and I did! I have been heading out toward Lancaster SC these days and I have no clue where I am. I had to stop at a store yesterday to get directions back toward Monroe.

40 miles later and 15 average speed I was back at the house. Nope, not impressive numbers but I am not trying to impress! I even rode around downtown Monroe yesterday and found a cemetery I never even knew was there. It's not hard to find either, I have been by it a hundred times one block away but never stopped to check it out.

see that belk sign top right of that building.. That is the first belk store...


I even found the sticks......
"Things Change", right now I like change.....

Friday, May 11, 2012

Great Day For A Ride.............

So after watching it rain for 2 solid days, a weekend in Charleston and needing to mow the yard when we got back, I haven't ridden in 6 straight days! I even had new bar tape installed and waiting to be broken in. I finally got out!

As soon as I got home I changed and hit the road. I have been changing up my routes a little lately and did the same last night. I went straight toward town then made my way out to the country.

It seemed like every dog in Union County was enjoying the weather also. They must have spent to much time staying out of the rain, I got chased by more dogs than I can count! I swear I can ride the same route everyday and some days no dogs then other days it's on!

I did notice the fields they have been working down around Mountain View (601 south) have started to come up. I stopped and got these pictures, in about a month I will be riding thru a tunnel of corn! Which ain't a bad thing, it helps block the wind!

It was nice to have the nice quite roads to myself. I was riding along and enjoying the afternoon and thinking about my next dog encounter when I got to the spot I usually find him at. He wasn't there! I found this instead.

burned to the ground..............
Now this dog is kinda like a buddy to me, it's a little dachshund (weeny dog). He always comes out and chases me and barks like a nut! If I stop he will lick you to death and then go home. Kinda funny! I have seen him for a few years.

While I was taking this picture a neighbor pulled along in his car and asked if I knew the the people, I said no just the little dog. Then he tells me the family got out fine but they lost the dog and their cat!

Damn the little fellow managed to dodge all those cars and entertain me all those times I rode by and then ended up losing out to a house fire.....Kinda ruined my evening.

Yes I am glad the family didn't get hurt and I know it's just a dog but he was my buddy.....Wished I knew his name.... I called him Short Stack....

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Making Use......

Of the rainy day! Since I still couldn't get out and ride yesterday I decided to dig my little motorcycle trailer out of the building. It was in the back behind the grill, lawn mower, and everything else.

I moved 3 of the dirt bikes out there to make room for the trailer in the garage. Of course it was as dirty as the motorcycle so I stood out in the rain and washed it.


clean and mean.....
Followed by a little maintenance and Armour All, it's ready to go! I am kinda excited, I think a beach trip is in order. At least an over nighter.

This is a Bush-tec motorcycle trailer. They don't come any nicer! It has air-ride and the cooler, matching Gold Wing tail lights, aluminium wheels and the spoiler! Inside it has carpet all over and I can even hang a removable garment bag inside the lid.

It has a total of 26 cubic feet of capacity, even my wife has room for all her stuff. With 210 pounds of payload on air-ride it don't get any nicer!

I can almost put a bike in the it! I have to remove both wheels but I can do it.........Hum.......

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

That Was Fun..........

Simple things for simple minds! I promise it doesn't take much to make me happy. Last night all it took was a weed eater with rain, and a new roll of bar tape!

I mowed the yard the night before and then yesterday I used the weed eater. About halfway through, it started to rain.

Yep, I never slowed down! Why stop when your already nasty.

Then I went in, had a shower and headed back to the garage. For the last few days I have been playing with the motorcycle and haven't even mentioned the bikes. That doesn't mean I haven't ridden them I just haven't talked about them.

Well with going to Charleston for the weekend and now the rain, it makes 5 days since I have pedaled! That's a long time for me! Tonight the weather looks no better, but then we are going to get a few days.

I am ready! I might not be racing any this year but I still love to ride! 5 days is way to long! So while I wait I needed to do a little maintenance!

New bar tape! You know your riding your road bike to much when bar tape only last a few months!

I picked blue because they had blue! No other reason.

Once it was on I realized how briliant my sub conscience mind is!

Check it out! You would think I planned it, matching tape/water bottle lid/and seat pack! Oh yea, I have style without even thinking about it! Now when the weather gets right, It's On........  

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Found one.....

This would be my dream job...........................

             Charleston Pedicab.................

Back To The "Deal".......

Yep my short lived, well deserved, break from the normal is over, and it's time to return to the regular "deal". Everybody has a "normal"  and now I am back at mine.

I guess it could be worse, my life is pretty normal so I have much to be thankful for. I just wish I could have more vacation time.


Now I get to plan my next little adventure! That puts a smile on my face! It will involve 2 wheels no doubt about that, especially since the Gold Wing is in flight again!

I do have the trailer I haven't even started on yet. With the rain coming the next few days I will probably work on cleaning it up. By the way, today is the first day I have driven the truck since I got the bike back on the road.

With being out of town for the weekend I haven't ridden the bicycle since last Thursday. That's 4 days, way to long. So a ride is right at the top of the list for things to do!

I also have finalized the load set up on my touring bike and have it ready to go. I just need the right combination on the weather and I will be out the door!

Monday, May 7, 2012

More Pictures............

big crane bigger boat....

in case you wanted to know....

bar with the bills

our addition to the wall

love the columns

karen and her new buddy

one of many cemetaries..........

I Love Charleston !!!!!!!!!

I could move there tomorrow! We had a great weekend and got to see some friends. Karen used to work for Presbyterian Hospital and her good friend Paula lives down there so we where hooked up!

Saturday we spent ALL day, 12noon to 10pm in downtown. Of course we hit a few bars and did a lot of shopping. Checked out several beautiful homes and relaxed down in the Battery area for awhile.

Of all the pictures I took I never even got a shot of a Pedicab. Damn it! That was our preferred mode of transportation for the day! That's my dream job! If I moved there that would be the only job I would want!

We meet several of the guys and all where great. Most work about 12 hours a day and clean up all summer long! I don't want to say exactly what they make but it would make your jaw hit the floor! No shit! They clean up all summer and budget for the winter when it's slow!

the wife brought me a cake!

see the cooper river bridge in the back

I wish I had my swim trucks!
Anyway back to my anniversary! It was nice and we enjoyed the time alone. We enjoyed some good food and good beer! Look forward to the next 17 years! Now enjoy the pictures.....

More to follow tomorrow, I hate to bore you with all of it today!!!!

Friday, May 4, 2012

Charleston SC and 17 Years..............

Yea Charleston has been around longer than 17 years but my wife has only been putting up with me for that long! That's right it's our anniversary.

It seems like yesterday we had the wedding and then the first kid. Now the kid is about 2 years from finishing school and I am just about completely grey headed! Pre-mature I might add!

Maybe I should say I turned grey early, mature is not really a word that fits me.

Anyway back to Charleston, we started going down there several years ago and we love the place! You can walk about anywhere and the history is over the top! I have been wanting to play with the camera down there and see what I can get.

cooper river bridge....
We will be staying to the right of the big new bridge. Karen has good friend who has a place in Mt Pleasant maybe a 1/2 mile from the bridge. So next week I will bore you to death with some really crappy pictures that I think are just amazing..

Yes we are taking the bikes how else do you get around a place like Charleston..........

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Oh Yea!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I picked up the Gold Wing last night at 5 came home and went to work! It was filthy! I worked on it for 3 hours before I had it done!

I washed and put armour all on all the stuff that needed it and I was ready to go. It's been awhile since I have ridden it and man it's fun!

I went to the store twice just for the hell of it!

By the time the sun went down I was beat and had it done. Now I need to get it inspected so I can get my tag renewed and all will be right.

checkout the neat little flip down sun block...hi tech....
I also stopped at Cycle Gear and got a new helmet on the way home from work. I love new toys!!!!!!