Friday, November 25, 2005


My Ford Contour is in the shop for repairs. It started leaking coolant about a week ago. I looked at it but couldn’t find the source of the leak. The hoses were OK, but the leak seems to be coming from inside the radiator. Sure enough, the radiator had to be replaced.

But the garage found another problem, one that I probably would have missed. The wiring harness to the radiator fans had been eaten away by battery acid. The battery cracked and leaked about 2 years ago. I’d tried to wash away all the acid I could find, but I’d missed the wiring harness. It could have caused a fire. Since my daughter is driving the car most days, I was glad the mechanic found it.

Regardless, he couldn’t get the car finished on Wednesday. I left it at the shop and rode my bicycle home.

We have just that one car, and Mary needed to get food for Thanksgiving dinner. We walked to the grocery Wednesday night. It’s an easy 10-minute walk. I carried my enormous messenger bag to haul stuff. Mary did not disappoint me, and I was loaded down like a pack animal on the way home. My shoulder is bruised from the weight!

I’d been planning to drive to the beginning of the TCCP ride down in Tulsa, but without the car, that obviously wasn’t going to happen. So I decided to ride the Giant instead.

I awoke at 5AM with a crushing headache. I was dehydrated. It would make the morning that much harder. I loaded some canned goods to donate to the food drive. After a small breakfast and some coffee, I pushed off for Tulsa just after dawn, messenger bag slung over my shoulder.

Brian Potter, Gary Parker, and Sandra Crisp showed up for the ride. We didn’t have any runners this time, and Sandra was the only one who drove to the start.

At 8AM, The Gang of Four left McClure Park to ride along 11th Street to the Salvation Army pickup on 31st and Riverside. Traffic was very light, and it was a pleasure to ride along 11th Street. It was one of the alignments for Route 66 through Tulsa and it’s peppered with Historic Route 66 signs. This really is a pleasant ride in light traffic.

We dropped off our food donation, then went north toward downtown, intending to ride the new Osage Prairie Trail up to 56th Street. Brian peeled off as he had to meet his father.

Gary, Sandra, and I rode along the new trail, still unfinished in places, but smoothly paved along its length. It’s a rails-to-trails project that will eventually extend all the way to Barnsdall through a lovely scenic valley. I’m looking forward to it.

A couple of miles from the end of the trail, Gary’s wife, Barbara, called and offered to pick up him and Sandra. We’d been riding into the wind so they would have had a tailwind going home, but Sandra was getting dinner together for her family, and she was pressed for time. She truly appreciated the lift.

At 56th Street we parted. I rode home alone and bonked with a few miles to go. My legs felt like they were on fire and my speed dropped from an easy 15mph to a tortured 12! I drank the last of my water and kept grinding away into the wind.

When I got home, I was very hungry. I made some pancakes and coffee for brunch. Jordan inhaled his. The kid is a bottomless pit for food.

My legs still felt like wood after brunch, so I made a “Dad’s Cocktail”. That’s 2 ibuprofen chased by a double shot of espresso. It works! I felt much better, but even with all that caffeine, I still fell asleep an hour later. I’d put in about 40 miles for the morning, half of it into a moderate headwind, so the nap was welcome.


Blogger George said...

Hey, I thought I was the only one who knew about that "Dad's Cocktail" I don't use coffee, I use diet iced tea, the local brand around here seems to have as much caffeine as Red Bull:-)

7:36 AM  

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