Apr 6, 2005

Nothing In Particular

Tuesday Night
I’ve only been racing bikes for about four years, & yet as I spun down Olive toward Terracina on Tuesday night, it felt like I’ve been doing it for a decade. Not that I’m getting bored with it; I’m just saying it’s a familiar feeling, even though it was the first Tuesday night since the time change. I guess it’s been about 6 months since the last Tuesday night Sunset ride, but it almost felt like we hadn’t skipped a week. Anyway, my new 10-speed Dura Ace-equipped Trek 5.9 Madone allowed me to hold big ring on the first lap with little stress & on the second time up Sunset, it allowed me to gap the group by a few yards. When I looked back & realized that I had a cushion, I picked it up a notch and put more time on the break. For a while it appeared that I was on my own, but Andy Padilla managed to bridge up to me & we rode the final lap together. Padilla wasn’t letting up at all on the descents either, so there was no time to rest. It was a good workout and I needed that after my poor performance at Sagebrush.

I suspect that as the summer progresses so will the fitness of certain people. Plus, Zuke, Mike Shepard & Josh weren’t there. It will get harder. There were probably between 40 to 50 dudes & I was glad to see some new Tuesday night faces too, like Art, Jon Weaver, Jon Reth & a bunch of other guys I don’t know. Hopefully they’ll keep coming out. Apparently Josh opted to ride his swanky new mountain bike instead & Turner has been working up in Big Bear, so neither one of them was a factor. I’m not sure where Zuke & Shepard were. Steelman Steve & I are planning to do Puke w/Zuke tonight. I’m sure that will hurt.

Writer’s Block
Since I’m lacking motivation & creativity to write much new, I’ve decided to type up portions of our vacation journal from last summer. I was trying to find a home for it & decided to open it up & reread it. Turns out, it’s mildly amusing, so why not type it up:
Friday, July 30, 2004
We left @ about 8pm on Friday night, but before we even got out of Grand Terrace, Denise realized that she forgot this journal that I’m currently writing in (obviously, we must have went back for it). We stopped for the night in Jean, NV in the parking lot of the Gold Strike Hotel & Casino. When we got there we immediately used the restroom in the casino. On the way out we saw some guy passed out on the floor in the casino entry way.

Saturday, 7-31-04
We were awoken early by the rising sun & the urge to use the restroom. At approximately 5:30 am we urinated in the bushes of the hotel parking lot. Then we went back to bed for an hour or so. I didn’t sleep very well on the first night but Denise did, so that’s all that matters. Finally up & out of the van, we entered the Gold Strike for a final bathroom run. This time, on the way out we saw some old dude with a cane asleep on a park bench outside of the casino. Odd? Yes. Mre odd is the fact that the same old dude was asleep on the very same park bench the night before. Maybe he was sleeping. Hopefully he wasn’t dead, but we weren’t going to stick around to find out.

We didn’t even stop in Vegas, however we stopped in St. George, UT to stretch our legs & you guessed it; use the bathroom. Denise spotted an Old Navy so we stopped there. She purchased two pair of shorts. I got nothing. Somewhere along the line we decided to drive to Zion Nat’l Park instead of continuing on I15. Once into to Zion we paid $20 & rode the park tram to the Zion Lodge, which was maybe a third of the way in to the canyon. We hiked a mile to the Emerald Pools. The trail was mostly single-track & very hot. We hiked back to the lodge & instead of heading out of the park, we continued in the van through the park toward I70. Before leaving we went through a mile-long tunnel that was cut through the red rock in the 30’s. Zion was beautiful & we decided that a return trip in the spring or fall, of any year, would be worth the price of admission.

Just outside of Zion we got gas & then took Hwy 89 toward I70. Famished from our big 2-mile hike, we had dinner in the town of Hatch @ some Hotel/Restaurant. For $9.95 we split a 12” pepperoni pizza that was served to us on a round piece of cardboard. I think it was from the nearest Wal Mart, but neither of us cared because we were freaking starved.

We forged on past the Big Rock Candy Mt. outside of Richfield, UT. I was excited because I had ridden ATV’s with Ken Vreeke & Michael MonroE at the same site the summer before for some Honda deal. By about 10 pm we arrived in Fruita, CO & almost stayed at the CO Welcome Center, but decided we better not because the sign said, “No Overnight Camping,” which in my opinion isn’t very welcoming. Plus, it’s redundant because who ever camps without staying overnight. Before finding a place to stay we drove through at Wendy’s and paid $1.06 for a Jr. Bacon Cheeseburger that I ate. Then we drove across the street to the Colorado Nat’l Monument Camp Ground. We paid the “Overnight Camping” box $17 (some of it in pennies, like a couple of hippies) & parked in the tent camping area. Just as we were lying down to sleep a civil dispute broke out between a couple parked by us. They yelled & screamed at each other for a while. I think alcohol was involved. I slept through most of it, but Denise watched & listened from inside the van to get the low-down. I think the couple was from Texas.

To be continued…
I promise no bike stuff next time.

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