Wednesday, August 30
I snuck behing a Sheriff and made it to Forest Falls before the road was closed. In the woods ash was already falling and the 4pm sky resembled that of dooms day as the blood red sun snuck behind the smoke plumes. I headed out of town towards Angeles Oaks, that was the only way out. The road between FF and Big Bear was desolate. Not a single car. As the red sun was dropping, casting erie shadows, i could only think of bad things to come. The metropolis of Big Bear beckoned me with it neon lights and season only toy shops. This is when i hit up Taco Bell, a place i usually shun. My choices were slim. McDonalds - don't even get me started on that one; greasy mex places (But there is always the one where we start the races, gotta love that one.) But when on EVAC status, no time to dine in.
Now I didn't have to leave. The sheriff didnt knock on the door, the locals didn't flee. But i have to make a living or go through the motions of making a living, down in the nasty nasty valley. The option i took was to drive up and retrieve the bikes (duh) properly place PET with Jason (who doesn't leave the mountain until the flames are literally licking at his heels) and get some clothes so i don't have to waste time and scrilla at Target (which i am actually banned from due to an over spending issue).
HWY 330 was closed for some construction so the only artery out of the mountains, besides Yucca or other unmentionable "high desert locals" would be the 18. This road is of the devil. All mountain traffic packed onto a poorly banked, awful lighting, double laned, race track...in the dark. This is why i did not eat my dinner. I am a pro at eating and driving. This time, i white nuckled it, screened cell phone calls and turned off the music. Just kidding. it is a crazy road though.
Down here on the flat lands i have more than enough to do. Pace out a mile on the track. Make jr. high girls to tae bo in a classroom. "What? Are you complaining?? Do you want to go outside? We were supposed to run a mile today!! Are you ready for that? Huh? huh? You think that is bad air quality? try living in India. Ugh. Oh you have your school picture today? Just put your hair in a pony tail, thats how i always wear it, and it looks good." Sorry. I digress. I spend a lot of time convincing children that exercise is fun.
I am actually have a fantastic week, actually riding my bikes (eek) and expiriencing an overall sense of life enjoyment.
My cycling sails were deflated, so i backed way off, worked on the inside (tear) and got back to the center. Overtrained cyclists, you know what i am talking about.
Peace out and watch that buck shot. They make shooting ranges for a purpose GO AND SHOOT THINGS THERE
Saturday, August 19
This is what i drive down into every day going to Redlands. See that line in the sky? I wonder if it has caloric value.
These are Jeremy and Suzanne's pets in Colorado. Glacier, Sherpa, and Coho. They even have a sled to pull on the snow and a wagon to pull on the road!! Jason wants to breed one with Dozer to create the Bulsky, the most powerful dog ever with phenomenal endurance and very odd looking fur.
I became quite bored tonight, sad for the last saturday night of summer, school starts on monday! So i stripped down the sugar and spit shined it. Got a flat to fix on the 9.8 and Hulda Crooks dirt to remove. I will maybe clean the roadie up a bit, gotta take her out for a spin tomorrow!
I REALLY took stuff apart! I think it will ok though. There was dirt from here to Vermont stuck in that thing, so it needed to be done. Uncle Greg is looking at this and freaking out. Dont worry, if it gets real bad, i will get some help!
Somehow i convinced Jason to go to Doheney State beach with me and a bunch of the 11th graders and their parents today. A great time was had by all.
Monday, August 14
it was 4:40am in the Denver Airport, today. I threw my toothpaste in the trash, another $2.19 wasted. Security man #1 tells me to dump out .09oz of water in the trash can. i nicely ask him if he wants me to replace my lid, he says yes. TSA lady says "excuse me, i will need to remove your lids. you can elect to mail them home, go and check them with your baggage, or throw them away." thank you for the wonderful and profound options. I am now minus two bike bottle lids.
Heres the pros: i came in 2nd overall for the norba national series open womens short track. I also came in 3rd overall for the same series in expert women 19-29 for cross country. I guess the reward for traveling hundreds of miles, throwing my body down mountains and slogging through mud since april is a nice, small, placque. Thank you NORBA.
Heres some more pros: i totally hit the wall on sunday's XC course. Thats ok though, you gotta learn what it feels like sometimes. The mental trauma to convince myself to complete the dang thing was almost more than i could bear. Speaking of BEAR...
Bear Naked Cannondale gave Ma and Pa a t-shirt, so they hooked me up. Bright Orange, in true Jose Ole style, i was wearing at LAX, (while i waited for my 20 minute commuter flight to Ontario) while i sat in Starbucks, a place i usually do not promote. This lady comes up to me and says do you work for them? Um, no. So i guess she knows the founder. So i told her that in 8 years, when i am pro and all, i would like to ride for their team. so we will see what happens.
Benefits of being an expert: i read somewhere that you are not truly an expert at something until you have done it for 10 years. I guess i have 9 to go. by then i can go to Masters worlds. But we have these magnificent start times: 7:30am, 9:00am. usually still fogged in and cool. Then there is the benifit of riding with 14 year olds. Since i am a teacher by nature, i tend to hang out with them, especially when they take huge diggers in the woods and ball their eyes out. It is just like 9th grade PE. where better for a little counseling than in a thick forest in a foreign town?
Only thing that kept me going: So on the second lap i was flying solo, off the back. i saw Adam Craig, Carl Decker, and one of those Huge Kona boys out toolin around. Exciting for sure. As i crested a climb, probably pushing my bike due to the fact that my legs were on vacation, i saw them again! truly exciting this time. As i continued down the fantastic single track through the dense forest, a lone expert guy showed up. He had taken a wrong turn and was now on the same voyage as i was, to finish and get the stupid points. I had met him in Deer Valley, i think his name is Justin, nice chap for sure. He brought the news that saved the day. "Adam said to give you a push." or something to that affect. Thank goodness for those pinata uniforms, once someone meets you in them, they will never forget you.
Tuesday, August 8
As i return from Brian Head, UT and NMBS #something, i am faced with the fact that i must attend to the flip side of my life. I am planning in two months what most people take, oh, 15. A wedding is to be had on October 15, strategically placed between the Fall Classic in Big Bear and the Cal State Final in Castaic. Oh please, let the road rash and bruising be minimal! I also was "awakened" to the fact that most of my time goes like this: sleep, ride, stretch, eat, eat, eat, work, sleep. So Jason and i are going to the movies tonight. Maybe i will even fix my hair...nah.
BRIAH HEAD RECAP: My heart was palpating a bit too much and it actually hurt in my little chest cavity. i was really hot most of the weekend while others were doning arm warmers and parkas. The decents were death where i ran/fell/threw myself down faster than actually riding. I nailed it on the climbs and flats (big ring Uncle Greg) but as soon as i dropped onto the single track, the girls i had caught would show up again. Thats ok though, i eeked out a 5th place, having dropped back to 7th for a bit. I was polite to everyone and had an awesome time. Still however, the trash talking resumes and rumors are spread. thats ok though, i have Pet to take care of my problems. SHort track was a 6th place, ok for the day. The worst part ever of the whole weekend was the drive home. My nerves were twinging with Vegas traffic as i assumed most everyone was nearly inebriated or excessively short of sleep, making their attention spans and fortitude in the heat very low. Trevor was my guide for the weekend and thanx to him, we made if back over Cajon without a glitch.
Teri, this one's for you!
So since i am getting ready for wedding and all, i have to buy shoes and stuff. I decided to see how the pedicure/manicure thing works, so it wouldnt be a shocker the day before the event. Oh what a shocker it was non-the-less. There was for sure no english to be had, and i think they were talking about the excessive bruising on my shins and calves. The only other clients were two males getting pedicures, one attaining hot pink polish, because why not! I tried to leave because i thought she was done, but oh no, one more coat to go honey. far out, i dont think i can take these things off with needle-nose pliers! How will i fix my chain? What if a twig gets stuck under there? WAH!
(those really aren't mine) i also cracked and bought some over-priced BOOK of wedding non-knowledge. Why do i care if that dress cost $4,800 plus a limb?
Thursday, August 3
what a good boy, riding his bike in the rain in his duck boots! He will be the first Pro Mtn biker from the Cook Islands!
Off to Brian Head tomorrow at 5am, yippee. Two more nationals to go! Just finished making a stellar power point presentation for grad school about what to expect in PE, should be great!