On the road again...
Wednesday, September 03, 2014
today I discovered a whole side of my town that I didn't know existed. :) And it only cost the city... what did the guy tell me? almost $700,000. *snerk*
I went to the Ren Fest with my family and my boyfriend on Sunday, and I had a great time... 'til I saw the pictures mom took. I heard somewhere that cameras add 10 pounds, but seriously, how many effing cameras were ON me?! Am I really that wide from the back? gawd, I have no waist. Ugh. And I was even in a corset! *sigh*
Also, very annoyed with myself that I didn't take my step tracker. I'd have made my goal before lunchtime. *lol* I'm talking about the Michigan Renaissance Festival in Holly, MI. It's a 17-acre perma-site that takes all day to browse and to see all that's offered. Jousting, comedy shows, music, competitions, food and drink, activities, all sorts of good stuff... like Tartanic! Eeeeeee, bagpipes!! ^_^ I've gone almost every year I could, and you bet your boots I dress up. :) I've found that you don't get pestered and harassed by costumed performers as much if you're dressed up. *lol* Bonus points if you're a little bitty kid or a stunningly accurate adult. My early 16th century Italian noblewoman's gown never fails to get complements.
Aviana, my soon-to-be-3 niece looked ridiculously adorable in her Hydrangea Fairy dress. Everyone, from other kids to the entire cast of princesses, went gaga over her. *lol* I just know as she gets older I'm going to be her go-to for costumery. :D
Anyway... yeah. Not happy with how I look on film. If I were about six inches taller I'd look fine. To me, it looks as though someone or something reached down from above... the Monty Python foot, for example... and squashed me down like so much play-doh. I look misshapen in photos. In my mirrors I look fine.
SOMEONE GET ON THIS. Invent a camera that doesn't do that weird distorting effect on one's appearance.
Today I had one of those ridiculously early morning shifts that had me running for freedom at noon, so I have the whole afternoon to do with as I please. Came home, grabbed the mail, put the chicken Jonathan oh-so-thoughtfully dethawed for me into the crockpot, gathered up the trash, and thought hey, since I'm already outside why not take the bike down to the brand new bike path down the street. SMASHING! Of course, this involved squicking myself out over all the cobwebs and bugs that have made the nooks and crannies of my bike home, trying a few different combinations on the lock until I hit the right one, lubricating all the moving parts (omg, I am so sorry I left you out in the rain!!), and finally wheeling it to my car where I've got a foot pump tucked into the milk crate o' junque in my trunk. Once I was inflated and lubed and everything was secured (water bottle, wallet, cell phone, etc) I was ready to go.
At first I thought I'd have to turn back early. Just getting onto the next street over was a challenge. Mind y'all, I haven't been out on my bike in, oh, all summer, so I'm well out of shape. I got down to the start of the bike path, which is a trial in and of itself because I have to cross a busy road in a blind area and then pedal for my life up a steepish incline. Then I get to cool my heels at a major intersection listening to the crosswalk light tell me "WAIT" in a very stern, 3rd grade teacher kind of way. Ding, it's my turn, I don't get creamed, and I'm good to go!
The new bike path is 3 miles from the intersection to the state line, crossing about 4 side streets, running parallel to a major thoroughfare... although, you'd never know it. The path is fairly gentle; no steep inclines or sharp declines. My only complaint is that there are too many blind spots where the path crosses the roads. I'd rather they cut back the foliage a bit so we can access traffic as we're approaching the crossing instead of having to slam on the breaks, stop, and then try to start off again.
Thing is, I'm 5'3" and I'm riding a bike meant for a tall man. The crossbar hits me right in the delicates when I'm standing, and when I've got my little wallet/phone pack strapped on the bar I slam into it with my belly when I brake too hard and come off the seat. *lol* The brakes are fairly new, and overly sensitive. I'm so used to riding with bad brakes that I have no idea how a working bike is supposed to behave! HAH! And speaking of a male bike... the seat isn't shaped for a feminine rear end. Yeah, Imma gonna be feelin' that tomorrow.
Anyway, the path is surprisingly lovely. I found myself surrounded by trees and flowers, bees and butterflies, and even a bunch of robins getting their last hurrahs in before fall migration. There's some charming wooden fencing up where there are any dropoffs or water access, and there are benches at either end with maps and info about the path itself.
When I got to the state line end of things I stopped for water and to look at the maps and info. I met an older couple who were visiting the area and were on a pleasure ride. I chit-chat with the gentleman for a little while about the area, about bikes, about the cost of the trail and the city's plans for connecting it to the Riverwalk and for expanding it towards Roseland. He reminded me so much of Michelle's dad. Full of quiet knowledge, with an air of unflappable calm. His wife, however, didn't remind me a thing of Michelle's mom. *lol* Michelle's mom is warm and smiley and full of good humor. This gentleman's wife was a bit standoffish. No matter. We parted and I headed back home, enjoying a look at the backside of an area of which I thought myself so familiar. I didn't realize how close I actually am to several places I frequent. "Holy cow... the shoe store is right there! RIGHT THERE! I could get my biking in and reward myself with NEW SHOES. SCOOOOOOORE!" *lol* There were also plenty of gas stations and such where, if I needed to, I could detour and get myself a water refill. Heck, I could even get to my bank on bike. Sweet.
So I made it back, and I feel like imitating my niece, clapping my hands and saying, "I did it I did it!" I seriously didn't think I'd have the stamina or strength to do the entire 6 miles, but once I got past the first one, the rest were a breeze.
Now to get myself to go out on the regular. THAT will be the struggle.