July 16th, 2006

A bitchy remark, battery/starter incident, 22.5-mile ride, more second-hand smoke...

I was up early this morning, 7:30ish, unheard of for me, really.

Late morning, I made a bitchy little comment to Robert, and he left shortly after that. I felt bad.

After about an hour, he returned with the sweetest cantaloupe ever, which he'd bought two of — one for me — on the Flea Market grounds. In spite of the 'lope being the sweetest one ever, the man who brought it was sweeter yet.



At about 1:30 or so, I loaded my bike into my car, and then turned the key in the ignition to that same clicking-cranking sound. Shit!

I just kept trying, and one time just held the key to the on position, as opposed to short tries, and the car cranked. Grrrrrr!

I drove out to Crosswinds Marina, off Fearrington Road, which since it was about a 25-minute ride, was enough, in theory, to re-charge the battery. I thought these things while driving out there:
  • I wonder why this battery is not holding a charge.
  • I would think that would be what the problem is, since gorgeous said yesterday that my battery tested "good."
  • I wonder if something that's using the battery is staying on when I turn the car off.
I checked the map light, turning it on and off, to make sure the button wasn't stuck in the on position, with the bulb possibly burned out.

I looked at the radio, the fan and heating and air-conditioning buttons, the cigarette lighter, and to see if anything was stuck in the charger for cell phones and such — all of which go off automatically when I turn my car off. I presume.

More thoughts:
  • How would I know if something was staying on, and draining the battery, when it looks like everything's off.
  • How would a car repair place know this?
  • Would any car place be able to diagnosis this, or would I have to take it to the dealer?
  • I hate car problems.
  • I hate knowing nothing about something that's so germane to my life.
  • I hate being suspicious of most care repair places.
Before setting out on my ride, I drove the route Joe and I did last Sunday and clocked the mileage.

We had thought it was 26 miles from the cue sheets we were using from our training rides. After riding it last week, though, we both thought that it might be farther than that.

Well it wasn't. 22.5 miles. Not what we wanted to hear.

I also clocked a "short cut" that we can do using most of that route. It's 18.5 miles.



I checked in with Robert before heading out on my bike to make sure he was going to be around if 1) I got a flat tire on my bike, and 2) in case my car didn't start when I was done.

In my solitude riding, I had these thoughts, among others:
  • I'm going to do that short cut route I just measured.
  • As I was riding on the bridge over the lake: I didn't realize jet skis could pull a water skier. Makes sense, I guess, if it has enough horse power.
  • It's hot, but the humidity is only at about 55%, so it's a dry heat. Keep telling yourself that.
  • I like that this route is familiar now after doing it just last week.
  • About an hour-and-a-half before I started riding, I put SP 45 sunblock on my arms where they're still peeling a little. I wonder how effective it still is, and will be throughout the rest of this ride.
  • Damn. I forgot to put my handpump back on my bike after getting it back from Flythe.  I asked Robert to be on call if I got a flat because I hate changing tires mid-ride.  Well, I wouldn't be able to do it if I had to now.  Lot of good that spare tube is in my seat pack. I have got to remember to clamp that pump back on when I get home.
  • Is that dead deer still there, the one Joe said was hugely bloated up with one leg sticking up? It was right here, I think. Surely it's not still here. It's been a week. I don't smell anything.
  • As I'm approaching the road to take to make the route a shortcut: I'm feeling pretty good. I think I'll just keep going and do the whole 22.5 miles.
  • I'm a little over half way, and I'm through my first bottle of water. Good pacing.
  • I don't remember Pea Ridge Road being uphill for such a long part of it.
  • Since Joe and I usually stop and take a leak somewhere on this road, shouldn't it be Pee Ridge Road?
  • Taking my first, and only, break at the intersections of Pea Ridge Road and New Elam Church Road: Let me call Joe and tell him where I am.
  • Also while stopped: Let me check in with Robert on where I am.
  • I'm weary. Then Like a Bridge Over Troubled Water stuck in my mind.  The opening line.  "When you're weary..."
  • You shouldn't be coasting so much. You're here to get exercise.
  • Coasting is something you earn.  I earned it pedaling up Pea Ridge Road — uphill as I mentioned, and with headwinds, which I didn't. I'm coasting now, 'cause I'm tired and I deserve it.  I'm tired.  Quit whining.
  • Ah, the final turn. Only 3.7 miles to go.
  • Damn, I should be approaching the 64 intersection. How long can 3 miles be?
  • Finally, just a half-a-mile from here.
  • There it is, marina sweet marina. I feel good about what I've done. I hope my car starts.
My car did start, and I had an uneventful trip home.



I had boiled chicken and corn for dinner, and some of that out-of-this-world cantaloupe for dessert.

I took a two-hour nap.



I got to karaoke at Flex at about 10:30.

Kurt was talking to Gerald. Rob was talking to his friend Brian.

The usuals were singing.

I spoke very briefly with Kurt, and even more briefly with Gerald.

I left before midnight, wishing I hadn't gone. More second-hand smoke.