Wednesday, November 26, 2014

We Made It ,,,,,,,,,,

Last night we met at 4:30 and rode till 6:30. About a mile after I left the rain started drizzling. I woke up this morning and it is still raining! Both sides of my driveway are standing with water. It's supposed to stop shortly and then clear out. I looked at the weather briefly this morning and I think it's gonna clear for the next several days.

The woods probably won't be ready to ride till Friday but the road will still work. I even found myself thinking about a road ride last night while I was in the woods mountain biking. This time of year is about as good as it gets weather wise. I need to take advantage of that.

Last night the woods were awesome! It was slick in just a few places but overall it was perfect. Rocky River seems to be the go to trail these days, it has everything. Plenty of climbing and technical trail. Plus it's a little over 12 miles long. That makes for a good ride.

Anyhow tomorrow is Thanksgiving and we are closed Friday. It's now the official start to the Holiday's. In a way I am glad and in a way I hate it. I like the ideal of Christmas and Thanksgiving but the reality is not what "ideal" is. We had originally planned to go to the beach but with Karen being sick that plan didn't workout.

                           I really hate the fact that didn't workout.

But! I still get a good meal! Enjoy your holiday and remember to play nice and smile, even if you don't mean it!

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

So Far So Good ...............

I have been here for one hour and 15 minutes and my computer hasn't crashed yet! I have my fingers crossed, hopefully I can make a full day with no hick ups! The last few days have definitely been an adventure.

As I said the other day I rode Saturday and spent Sunday walking in the rain. I came home yesterday and had plans to walk the country club but the rain came and that squashed that. Instead I came home and did the dishes and that was about it. The excitement was raining down!

I made myself stay up for the first quarter of the football game and then it was bed time. I did find time to load up all my stuff to ride today. I don't know if that will happen or not but I am ready. I thought the rain was gonna be here Sunday and that was it. Yesterday was a surprise and then today we have about 55 percent chance of rain again.

Right now it shows we will have a clear day Thursday and then rain again on Friday. Of course the clear day will be when I am expected to see all the family and play nice. I would rather it rained all day Thursday and then I had a great day on my day off!

Monday, November 24, 2014

Here We Go Again !!!!!!!!!

I am typing this on the desk beside my desk, what does that tell you! I came in this morning and my "new" computer is completely locked up! The computer guru, our I-t guy can't get here till after lunch. What a way to start the week! At least it's a short week so it will be over soon. The guy beside me is on vacation this week so at least I have a desk to work from. No email, but at least a desk! Somebody will call shortly mad about me not returning a request but it is what it is! So I rode Saturday and walked Sunday. We got rain by the buckets yesterday and I just didn't feel like driving 50 miles to ride. Of course I got wet but what the hell. I had fun and the dog enjoyed it. Got to go computer guy is here.........

Friday, November 21, 2014

One Of Those Days ,,,,,,,,,,,,

So it's one of those days,,,, computer trouble all day.. Have a good weekend

Thursday, November 20, 2014

I Hope It's Over ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

OK for the last few days we have had really cold weather! For Charlotte it's been cold! But today it's getting back to normal. The bike is coming back out! Today we ride again, I start in the daylight and head to the darkness. I am still working on my night-fright!

The only TV I have watched so far the last few days is sporting events so no scary shows! I should be good to go!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Here We Go !!!!!!!!!!

OK, I have kinda dreaded writing this post and in a way hoped I wouldn't have too. Nothing is wrong, everything is actually really good except for Karen still being under the weather. She is getting better but that a whole nuther' blog post in it's self!

The reason I have "dread" would be my kid is going to go off to school. Yes he is 19 and yes he is a good kid and yes most parents went through these emotions back in August. But now it's my kid and my emotions! Cody finished up high school and he really didn't have any interest in going off to college. To pretty much appease us he went to CPCC here in Charlotte for the first semester. He went for us not really because he wanted to.

Well now it's time to get ready for second semester and we are going in a different direction. Hence the reason we drove to Blairsville PA and back over the weekend. Cody has decided he wants to learn diesel mechanics. At Wyo-tech school in PA. That's 9 hours from here!

The kid is really good with his mechanical ability and it definitely fits him. I just wish it was a lot closer! We went ahead and reserved him a small apartment and he starts right after Christmas, nine months later he will be done and back home. I just wish he was closer! Yea I know I said that already!

Believe me, if you were around me you would have heard me say that several times already! Not just twice! Now you know what we have been up too. My kid is growing up and I don't really like it. I accept it, and I am glad we did a good enough job that we can send him that far away and know he will be able to take care of himself. I did my part but it just seems to happen so fast.

Before I blink Chase is gonna be finished with high school.......... I need a drink............

Monday, November 17, 2014

Were Back ,,,,,,,,

First things first! As I have stated before, I drove a truck for 5 years. I still have my full CDL license, I can pull tankers, I can pull doubles, haul hazardous materials. You name it! I am still legal to drive it! Guess what I learned this weekend!

We left Friday morning and drove all day to Pittsburgh, actually we went to Blairsville PA. WE left at 9:30am and got there at 7pm. I was beat! We then did our deal Saturday and then came home yesterday. Total driving in 3 days, 19 hours and 1075 total miles! I am still tired!

Now I know! I will never ever ever ever ever ever!!!!! Drive a damn tractor trailer again!! As long as Bojangles needs "Master Biscuit Makers" I will have a back up plan! How I used to do that job for days on end I have no ideal. For some reason I remember most of it as a fun job. At least the first 2-3 years, from then on my memories aren't as good. I enjoyed going all the places and seeing all the sights. Until I realized I was seeing them at 65 miles an hour and not getting to "see" them.

                                                               There is a difference!

For the last 14 years I have always kept my CDL license current. They are just so hard to get that I felt I should. Well when they expire in 2016 I will have a standard class C just like every other person! I will no longer waste the money to keep them. I don't want to drive and I am not going to drive! So, "so long, to the trucking world I will wave"...

                                                                 The time has come,,,,,,,

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Until Next Week !!!

Looks like today is it for me, I have to head north for a few days and won't be here tomorrow. Cody and I are heading to Pittsburgh PA for the weekend. There is a reason behind this trip and bicycles have nothing to do with it. I hate to go ahead and tell the whole story now, I want to make sure it's gonna happen before I start talking about everything.

If all goes as planned we have changes coming! BUT, I want him to make the decision. This is way over my head..

Anyhow with his birthday taking up the first couple of days this week I finally slipped out for a ride yesterday. With leaving tomorrow morning I have a few things I need to do so I needed to make it a quick ride. Sherman Branch, my closest local trail got my time and I got in a lap before dark. I used to really try to avoid the place, I was just tired of it. But here lately I have found I am really enjoying the place.

It might be one of the easier trails but it rolls by fast and you can go fast! Nuff' said.....

I'll be back Monday, have a good weekend......

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

A Differnt Kind Of Scary !!!!!!!!!!

Saturday I had a plan to meet a few friends and show them around Rocky River Trail. They all live in Waxhaw and for them that's like an hour ride to get to the trail. When you figure in an hour ride each direction plus the ride a short ride on a Saturday morning turns into a half day ordeal! That's about the only draw back about riding a mountain bike. You have to drive to the trails.

So anyhow we all met and headed into the woods. This is where my ride got kinda scary. At Rocky River you have an awesome downhill to start the ride. The first mile and a half is all downhill, then you have a half mile climb to where the trail starts rolling across the hillside.

Now I might suck at climbing but I can damn sure go downhill! So I am bombing down the hill and all of a sudden "pow", it sounded like a gun went off! In the next 2 tenths of a second I think I have snapped the frame and then realize I snapped the seat post! NOT GOOD!

I am on a step downhill section and need to have all my weight to the back as I am working my way down the hill. The only problem! I now have a jagged broken off 31.8 millimeter metal pipe sticking straight up between my legs! Once the seat and mount brackets are gone that's what your left with!

I figured all of that out in the total sum of 4 tenths of a second! It's amazing how fast you can figure out problems when you know what the concequences are. Only option, over the bars and get away from the spear that was aimed at my ass! So as I am flying through the air with my out stretched arms I am already thinking about how this hillside has a lot of rocks on it and it could hurt once I hit the ground.

The tree's are a second thought, but none where in my direct flight path so I am more worried about the rocks. I do the old tuck and roll routine and jump up! That's when you take another split second to take inventory of all body parts! No blood and no terrible pain any where.

As everybody is pulling up I am standing in the middle of the trail. But I am happy! I find my seat and quickly figure out I can't fix it so the ride is over. I lower the seat as far as I can and try to ride back to the truck. I end up walking about halfway and riding half way.

                                   I go home fix everything get ready for the Sunday ride!!

Monday, November 10, 2014

TV Sucks!!!!!!

I swear I need to cancel the cable and turn off the TV! All the "night time by myself" progress I made over the last 6 months all went out the door! I came home from work Friday afternoon and ended up on the couch watching TV with the wife and then she did it to me.

She turned on one of those damn Dateline shows about a nice peaceful town and murder. It happened in Pendleton Oregon and apparently it's like the last place on earth you would ever worry about a murder happening. Much less a random murder and one that took almost 2 years and a second attack to solve.

By the time I had to go outside and put the damn dog up it was way dark and really scary! I swear I was sure somebody was hiding between the sheds, just waiting for me to turn my back! I put the dog up and hooked up her light and feed her in record time! Believe it or not I actually ran across the yard once I had everything done.

                                                                 What a puss !!!!!!!

It took me the rest of the weekend to get over it! Last night when the kids, yea the kids! Turned on the "Walking Dead", I went to the bedroom! No shit, if I had watched that last night after "Dateline" on Friday I would have never went outside again after dark! I am a total wuss.........

I did ride both days and we'll get to that tomorrow, I am busy and I got a meeting today I need to prepare for. See ya tomorrow....

Plus no night ride tonight my kid has his birthday today. Cody is 19 years old today! We have cake ice cream and Chinese food planned. He picked out the food,,,,,,,,,,,

                                                       Happy Birthday Cody !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Thursday, November 6, 2014

It's Fall ,,,,,,,,,,

I love fall! Although this year it seemed to come really fast! I swear the older I get the shorter the seasons get. I think my mid-life crises is about to hit! I never understood what that meant till this year. I always wondered how could a grown man in his mid 40's could just all of a sudden snap and go buy a Corvette.

I may not want the Vette but I am beginning to start to understand the reason behind it. Mid forties you start to realize your on the back side of the hill. Over the top that type of thing! In my 30's I never gave that any thought! In my 40's I do!

I think I might retire and blow all my money then go back to work at 60. I would rather be broke at 60 than save all my money and do nothing now. I am still young enough I could have a ball now and worry about it later. It seems to work for rednecks. We all know, or work with people who have no direction in life and live pay check to pay check. They seem to be happy and end up making it through life without too many worries.

                         Where as I worry about having money and saving, what the hell is wrong with me.....

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

I Made It ,,,,,,

Last night I left the house at 5:45. It was dark! I never bothered to call anyone else so I was on my own. I Have been planning on going by myself for a awhile and just never really made it happen. I always found a partner. Weather I want to admit it or not, the woods are dark!

Not that I am scared of the dark, it's what's in the dark that you can't see that you "think" is gonna get you? That's what I am scared of !! From the reactions I get from people when they find out we ride at night, let's me know I am not the only person who feels this way. I am just willing to admit it!

Anyhow I don't  seem to ride by myself as much in the winter. I have been trying to work on being more courageous but it's been a process. I started this summer with my golf course walks. I would go later in the evening and time it so I would be at the farthest point from the parking lot when it was getting dark. That way I would have to walk back to the car at least a mile in the dark.

Then I started working my way back to the car using the really dark nature trails. I had the dog with me so I figured she would hear the "evil" or sense "it" before "it" could get to us! My plan was to run really fast!

If your not laughing yet you need to read between the lines. I am a 46 year old man and I have a 46 pound dog walking with me in the dark woods all under the pretense that she is gonna hear the Boogie Man before I do. So we can run really fast! The funny thing is growing up I had a paper route and I went out every Saturday and Sunday before the sun came up and delivered news papers.

                                                        All in the city!!

Yet now I am out in the country and I am scared of the dark. You would think you would be safer in the dark out in the country woods than cutting through the back side of a shopping center at 5am! As a kid I used to love being out so early and watching things start up. I didn't even use a light I swear my eyes were used to the dark. Plus I had street lights to help.

Anyhow the thing I noticed back during the summer was the fact the dog never acted any different! Of course she being a dog she could see better than I could but she didn't act any different. She never acted like any thing was any different, if it was dark or still daylight. She acted the same and we always made it back alive.

So far I have ridden with my buddies a few times and I have went a few times by myself. The first time I went solo I did one lap and chickened out on a second lap! I was at one of our shorter trails so I was never to far from the lot. The other night I went and timed it so I was about halfway done and had to finish in the dark. I was at Rocky River Trail that time.

It's way down in the country and very dark! But I made it! Well last night I went and rode a lap at Rocky River all by myself! As I said in the very first paragraph I didn't leave the house till 5:45, it was already dark when I left. I got there and parked, got ready and headed in the woods. I knew I could at least ride the first section down by the river and if I got scared I could just go back to the parking lot.

I made it and for some reason felt really "calm", not sure why but that is about the best word I can think of to describe how I felt. I finally excepted the fact it was dark and I have ridden that trail a hundred times by myself in the daylight and nothing ever happened. "Dark" was not gonna be any different!

I slid across the field and started the second section and that's when it kinda hit  me, I was riding at night in the dark and I had a smile on my face. I had just ridden the section down by the river where you are right along the bank and nothing had come over the bank and got me!

I ended up riding the whole trail and only got spooked one time. I startled something in a bush and the noise "whatever it" made scared me. But only for a second, then  I realized I had probably scared "it" as bad as "it" scared me. I had a great ride and it was a great night.

                                          I am gonna win the battle of the darkness!!

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

5:45 ,,,,,,,,,,

It's now dark in the woods at "5:45". Time change sucks! The only saving grace, lights! Tonight I ride, so far by myself. Kelly is out of town and I haven't really bothered to call anyone else.....

I bet I ride really fast........... The Boogie Man,,, notice I capitalize his name out of respect! He might get me,,,,, no choice but to pedal fast!!

Monday, November 3, 2014

No Regrets' ,,,,,,,,

Nope, no sign up! I got up Saturday morning and decided I was content to let it go. I didn't check but I know it sold out, it does every year! Like I said before, I know pretty much where I stand in the pecking order. I ride with people who finish and ride in the top 10 of just about every race in the area. So for now I am happy!

I just can't seem to find the race fever anymore. Plus I got to race yesterday! Well not officially, But they never caught me! Saturday was a wash with all the rain and cold, I really never got up and got moving all day. It was just one of those days. Yesterday I went to Rocky River trail and got a good lap in.

I left my phone at work on Friday so I had no contact with the outside world. I had no ideal who was riding where or when so I was on my own. Plus with the invention of cell phones who remembers phone numbers! I don't know a single friends phone number. I just look up their name and hit call. Just like everyone else, so I missed the group rides. I got to work this morning and found out about everything. Just a little late though...

Since I was on my own to ride I decided to take the 26in full suspension bike. I figured I would take my time and enjoy the woods, at least that was the plan. But things change real quick and yesterday it changed within about 2 seconds! I get there and I am unloading and I guess it being such a wonderful day the place was packed.

Well as I am about to go in the woods I hear these two guys who were parked across from me make a comment. He tells his buddy "don't worry, we'll catch him in no time". My first thought was, "damn that wasn't to nice". But then my second thought was "bullshit" I'll blow up before that happens! The race was on!!

So if you ride the same trails all the time you know where the bailout points are and where someone "is" just by looking through the woods and seeing them. You know how far they are behind type thing. So now I am wishing I had brought my 29in bike just so I would be even faster. It turned out I didn't need the extra speed but I sure had to work for it. A 26in bike is just harder to ride! I am finally convinced the 29ers are faster!

Back to the ride! I am pushing it and I see them through the woods, they seem to be rolling but are doing a lot of talking. Hence they must not realize I considered this ride a race! I decide to let them in on things! We finally are at a point when I know they can hear me, I let them know they better pick it up if they think they are gonna catch me. He laughs and says "were on the way".

They get close but never catch me! Again the 26in bike liked to killed me but I was kicking it as hard as I could go! I ended up riding a lap of one hour and 15 minutes! A new record for me! When we finally got to the parking lot we all had a good laugh, they didn't realize I had heard them when we started, and sure didn't realize I was gonna make them work so hard. The one guy said he gave up on the notion of passing me a long time before, he just wanted to finish close enough to me to feel like he had done something!

That was a good ride!!!