dxmachina: (Dawn)
So... Last time I posted was back in April. The lack of posting hasn't been because I've been especially busy, or had nothing to talk about, but rather a matter of procrastination. <Shrug>

A couple of days ago I got back from a short camping trip to Watkins Glen, NY, with a small subset of my usual camping group. Fun trip for the most part. Did a couple of good hikes to see gorges and waterfalls, including the spectacular Taughannock Falls, along with a nice bike ride on the Catherine Valley Trail.The only negatives were the heavy rain the first night, and the fact that my air mattress developed a leak that got progressively worse each night, culminating in waking up at 2:30 Tuesday morning with my heavy upper body flat on the ground, my less heavy lower body boosted high in the air by the remaining inflation, and the largish meal I'd had at the BBQ joint in town trying to work its way back out through my esophagus. Yeesh!

I rearranged things to a more comfortable position and was able to get back to sleep until dawn. First thing I did was drive into town to Walmart to price a new mattress. Then I went to Dunkies for breakfast and wifi to check the forecast. They were predicting thundershowers the next day, so instead of getting a new mattress, I decided to cut my trip short by a couple of days, broke camp, and headed home. It turned out to be a good decision. I kept checking the weather radar the next day, and there were some intense cells over Watkins Glen. Now I just need to find and patch the leak. And maybe have a chat with baby!sis because her kids were the last to use the mattress.

---
While in Watkins Glen, we went and saw Guardians of the Galaxy at the local theater for cheap*. It was great fun, but no one but me wanted to stay to watch all of the end credits, so I missed the big reveal. Not to worry, I already had heard about who it was. When I got back home I started looking up the comic book version of the team, and I'm pretty sure I must have bought some of the original series. I was a huge fan of Adam Warlock, and he was in it. Actually, knowing that now makes me disappointed that he didn't make it into the movie (although some have speculated the he, too, is part of the Collection). The only character I actually remembered was Drax, from his time with Warlock. And, of course, Thanos and Ronan. I did once buy the first issue of Nova, so I also recognized the Nova Corps, but I never was a fan.

* I should note that it had been almost nine years since the last time I was inside a movie theater. It may have been cheap by today's standards, but I don't think I paid that much in the first run theaters back in the day. One of the many reasons I haven't been in so many years.

---
Anyway, I have lots more to post about, but for now... baby steps.
dxmachina: (Double Rats!)
...and then you don't go camping.

I tried to put the best face on it after the accident, but it was wishful thinking. The bruise on my hip is healing well enough, but the right side of my chest still gives me grief every time I move my arm or take a deep breath or cough. It's mostly soreness, not shooting pain, but 'tis enough, 'twill serve. I started hauling stuff up from the basement to load the truck, and had no endurance. Even driving around to do a few errands earlier was uncomfortable. The truck does not give the smoothest ride. I imagined a nine hour ride by myself up to Canada, and decided no matter how much I wanted to, I couldn't do it.

I was to share a site with Shane and Michelle, but the permit was in my name, so I went online and changed the reservation to their names so they can check in without me. Unfortunately, they're already staying elsewhere on the way, and I didn't have their cell number, so I had to find someone who had it. Took awhile. It's late now, so I will let them know in the morning. I did let others know I wouldn't be there.

I am feeling terribly sorry for myself right now. And totally decrepit. The last time fell off the bike I was hurt worse, and three days later was able to travel to Massachusetts for a week of training. That was only eight years ago. Now I feel like an old man. I was really looking forward to this trip, and I still have no idea what happened with the bike that caused me to lose control. It's as if some supernatural entity decide to reach down and stick out its foot as I rode past just to fuck with me.

And I can't even ride my bike to work off the aggravation. Feh!
dxmachina: (Dawn)
Feeling at bit better today. I took a long nap yesterday which helped. My side is still very sore, though. Walking isn't a problem, despite the massive bruise on my hip. Bending and stretching and reaching with my right arm are. I've been able to lift things without escalating anything, so there is nothing structurally wrong, but the obliques and upper chest muscles complain mightily.

I still need to get ready to go camping, so I did a little more of my equipment inventory. Thank goodness that I checked out the tent and air mattress situation last week instead of waiting. Most of what's left is much easier to handle.

That said, why do I have five, count 'em five, camp lanterns? One is fueled by propane gas and will provide exterior light for the campsite. That's fine. Then there's the brand new LED lantern that I picked up the other day because LEDs are the coming thing. They don't run through batteries the way fluorescent tubes do. The thing is that when I bought that one, I thought I had at most two other battery-powered lanterns, the larger of which was in pieces on my workbench because I'd left the batteries inside it for too long and they'd corroded. Turns out I had three, all using fluorescent tubes, one small four-battery lamp, and two large eight-battery lamps. I don't remember the second large lantern at all. It's a larger version of the small fluorescent, so maybe I elided the two, but for the life of me I can't see why I ever thought I needed it. It's not like I need more than two lanterns in the tent (one to hang up, and one down next to the mattress).

Anyway, I finished cleaning the corrosion out of the other large lantern, and then I tested all of them. They all work, but I don't have enough batteries on hand to run all of them, so one of the big ones will stay home, I think.

Still trying to decide what sporting gear to bring. I doubt I'll be ready to swing a golf club a hundred times or more by Saturday, so I'll probably leave the clubs home. I doubt I'll be ready to play tennis, either, but a tennis racquet is neither heavy nor bulky, so that'll probably come. I'll still bring a bike, because that doesn't require the extreme upper body motion that the other items do. I need to swap out the road tires for hybrids, because the nearby bike trail is unpaved. I had thought about bringing the old Univega since it not only has hybrid tires, but I also have a set of wider tires for it. So I swapped in the wide tires about a week ago and took it for a spin. Boy, did it ever ride like a pig. It's a heavy bike to begin with, and the wide tires make it worse. Plus the rear derailleur needs adjusting badly. It kept changing gears on me without me touching the shifter. So I hung it back up on its storage hooks for another time.

What I will do instead is take the slick, thin road tires off the Fuji and substitute the knobbly hybrids that I took off the Univega. They're only slightly wider than the Fuji's road tires, so they should fit on the narrower rims well enough. We'll see. I'll try that tomorrow when I'm a little more healed.
dxmachina: (Bike)
...I fell off the damn bike.

Had an accident today. Unlike last time, I don't really know what happened. I was on the path approaching a little trafficked cross road. I saw a car coming, so I braked. It wasn't an emergency braking situation. I had plenty of warning and plenty of distance available to stop. Next thing I know I was tumbling forward and to the right, as though the front brake had locked. I managed to maintain enough control to aim for the grass along side the path, and I mostly did land there. It's been very dry here, so even the grassy area was hard as a rock as my right side hit it, but at least it wasn't pavement.

I was still a good fifteen feet or more short of the intersection. The fall and the pain in my side stunned me. The car stopped, and the guys in it came over to see if I was okay. So did some other cyclists. As my head started to clear I did an inventory, and nothing seemed to be broken, just some muscle pain in my oblique area, and some scrapes on my knee. They stayed with me for awhile, but eventually I thanked them all and let them go about their business. I was only a few hundred yards from the parking lot, so I rode there, and found that it wasn't too bad, so I continued on with my ride and did a second lap. My side hurt a little, but it wasn't that bad, and I knew it would hurt a lot more once it stiffened up*.

* I was totally right about that, too.

I really wanted to finish the ride because when I went down I was 2.5 miles short of my all time mileage record for a single month. So far I've managed to set a new monthly mileage record every month this year, and this was going to be the Best.Month.Ever.

After I finished, I gingerly loaded both bike and myself into the truck, and headed home. When I got there, my neighbor said hello, then looked askance at the blood on my knee. I explained what happened and that I was okay if sore. It was then that I put my hand on my hip and felt the huge lump there where I'd landed. Bother. Time for some ice and a gingerly taken shower. I got pretty woozy after I discovered the lump, too. My head had been clear to that point, but I guess the knowledge of the lump triggered a reaction. Very weird.

I'm going camping in less than a week. There's supposed to be golf and tennis and volleyball, and I may have to just sit there and watch. That's gonna suck. This is the third time in a row I've been getting ready to go camping where something has happened to me healthwise. The last two times I wasn't able to go. I'm just hoping I heal up well enough to make the drive at this point.

It is also worrying that I have no good reason for the accident. One second I was riding along, braking to slow down, and the next I had lost control of the bike and was about to create a seismic event. Scary stuff.
dxmachina: (Calvinball)
I'm going camping in Canada next Thursday, on the 10th anniversary of the last time I went camping, also in Canada*, in exactly the same provincial park. One of my friends grew up in the area, and her family holds a big annual shindig, the Otty Lake Blues Cruise, on the first weekend of August. A bunch of us went up ten years ago, and now we're returning. There will be biking, golf, and tennis, among other activities. A good time is anticipated.

* I just now realized that I've had this journal for ten years now. Holy cats!

I should have all the camping gear I need. However, I haven't used any of it in ten years now**, so I figured that as long as I have all this free time, I might as well check to make sure it's all in good shape. A stitch in time saves nine, right?

** I used to go camping somewhere almost every year, but got out of the habit. Stupid, that.

The first thing I checked was my air mattress to make sure it would still hold air.

Pump it up... )

---
Apart from the nasty thunderstorm at 5 am that left my neighborhood without power for an hour, today was a nice sunny day, so I washed my sleeping bag and hung it out to dry on the clothesline. Smells like springtime!

---
One of the activities planned for the trip is a round of golf. The last time I played golf was ten years ago at the same event. I like to play, but I has no one handy to play golf with, so I never got around to it and fell out of the habit. Plus, it's gotten tres expensive round here. Still, I'm looking forward to it, and in anticipation, I figured I'd better go hit a bucket of balls to see if I could still play.

Well, it wasn't pretty, but I didn't embarrass myself, either. Apparently my days of hitting the ball a couple hundred yards in the air are long gone, but I can hit it 150 or so, and it was usually straight. And hitting it shorter has the benefit of making it harder to really lose a ball when you hit it wrong. Unless you're trying to clear a water hazard.

I also took 10 swings in the slow pitch batting cage, also for like the first time in ten years. I can still hit a line drive, so there's that. I do miss playing ball.

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