25 May 2007

Why Do Animals Love Me?

When I am on my bike I seem to be a magnet for dogs and other traumatic experiences with animals, I am not sure why. Maybe I should stop wearing fruity smelling lotion, or carrying half eaten Clif Bars in my jersey. Whatever the reason I have had my fair share of quite humorous encounters with dogs and other animals while biking.

I remember when I lived in Utah I was biking home from work one day. I lived in some hills and there was a really decent climb up to my house. As I was enjoying the pain of slowly going uphill a small and fluffy dog decided that he needed to make my life more miserable by trying to bite my ankles as I rode up the hill. The thing that really sucked was the fact that I couldn't pedal any faster than the dogs 3 inch legs could run. I was pretty much stuck with this "If I could punt you like a football I would" dog trying to take a piece of my achilles tendon home for dinner. I am not sure how I accomplished the feat of unclipping and taking a shot at the dog with my shoe, but I managed to make some contact, although minimal, with the dogs face and he promptly left me alone.

My second great encounter with animals came on fine summer day when my husband and I were mountain biking on Sheep Creek trail in Utah. For some reason, I never imagined that I might actually encounter an animal such as a sheep on such named trail. I mean they name trails after weird things all the time. Well, I was wrong. This was actually a trail that was guarded by a herd on unruly sheep. My problem was I was on the wrong end of an angry herd of sheep that my husband had stirred into hysteria. Bryan had ridden up past the herd of sheep that were taking up most of the fire road we were on. As soon as he got past they got all stirred up and mob mentality took over and they turned and started stampeding in my direction. I was mortified. I had heard of mtn. bikers injured by cougar attacks or falls from great heights, I was not going to be the 6:00 news story of "biker trampled by 50 angry sheep"! Luckily I had an escape route up a sidehill to my right. I managed to get off my bike and drag it up the hill with me and avoid the stampede. Once the dust cleared I found my husband practically rolling on the ground laughing. I was secretly hoping that he would fall on the ground laughing, and roll right through some sheep crap! That would have made my day.

Last Saturday I had my latest urban adventure with a quadraped. It's a nice afternoon and I am headed to my friend Joe's house to hook up for a ride. As I round a corner see a huge labradore come out from behind a bush and nail my front wheel, behind him is a little pug following obediently. As I am laying on the ground trying to figure out if I broke anything a) on my body, or b) on my bike, I can't seem to get the pug out of my lap. He seems to think that this is a great place to sit, or maybe he wants me to pet him, who knows. Meanwhile the lab is starting to sniff the road rash on my right arm that is now starting to bleed. I eye him suspiciously, he looks like he is about to start licking it. I landed on my tail bone really hard and can't figure out if I can stand up yet. The owner comes out and mumbles something about how he's seen worse road rash and I think "So your dogs have taken someone else out? Maybe you should think twice about letting them run around your neighborhood." He was nice enough to get me a paper towel so I didn't drip blood the rest of the way to Joe's. After some spiffy bandaging, courtesy of Joe, and 4 Ibuprophen (aka Trail Candy) I was good to go and managed to ride 3.5 hours before the drugs wore off and I had to go home to get more. The next morning hurt worse: sore neck, sore left quad, sore tail bone and aching arm.

Post-clean-up road rash

My brand new Fizik saddle :(

It's almost been a week and I am feeling pretty good. I did go mountain biking today and I realized that mountain biking with bruised tail bone is probably not the best idea as I had quite a bit of pain when I hit the bumpy sections. At least I feel okay on my road bike and I won't have to ride with an inflatable doughnut duct taped to my seat.

Mt. Hood Cycling Classic Preview

Over the last couple of weeks I have pre-ridden a couple of the stages for the upcoming Mt. Hood Cycling Classic. The race is going to be brutal, so I am glad to have had the chance to enjoy the scenery on two of the stages. I am sure that I won't even know that it's there come race day (which is next Tuesday by the way). Here are some photos I took along the way.

Stage 5 (87 Miles/9200 feet of climbing)

Bryan climbing to KOM #1

Going up to KOM #3

Mt. Hood getting socked in

Me knackered in the Mt. Hood Meadows parking lot
I only thought I felt this way after skiing, apparently not!

Time Trial Course (18.5 miles/1950 feet of climbing)

Nice view of the Gorge

The path the TT course finishes on

Part of the Mosier Tunnels

The other part of the Mosier Tunnels

Nice view of the Gorge and Mt. Adams in the distance

As you can see, the race is going to have some beautiful scenery. I can't wait!

24 May 2007

Lander Loves Dozer Day

Lander was in hog heaven last weekend when his dad took him to Dozer Day where he gets to sit on bulldozers and dig holes and fill them in. He is just like his Grandpa Don. Anything involving dirt and big machines makes Lander one happy boy.

23 May 2007

House Progress

I took these pictures last Friday when I was up at the house, it's starting to look like a house with the siding and cedar shingles up.

09 May 2007

Busy, Busy, Busy

I have been consumed with adult responsibilities the last two weeks. Our new house will be done in August so it was time to get the current house on the market. Our house is only 3 years old, but it was still a huge undertaking to get it ready to sell. This is due mostly in part to my obsessive-compulsive need to have everything near perfect. It is finally on the market and now all I have to do is keep it clean, which is easier said than done when you have a 6 year old boy.

I have been so bad about posting photos of the home building process, actually I am just lazy. Here are some progress shots leading up to the most recent pictures we took this week.

This is what it looks like today