My Neighborhood (Part 3)

I’ve misplaced my Research Hat!  All I want to do is ride my bike, play in my yard with all the greenery and drink beer by whatever pool is offered; any activity that is outdoors trumps all others.  I’ve given in to my hedonistic love of summer.  Hence, another post about my neighborhood.

This coming Monday, the forecast calls for 100+ temps, heat index above 105 (typical August in Frisco, Texas).  So maybe next week I’ll remember where I put that hat; maybe…  I’m such an ISFP!

Riding my bike is one of my favorite pastimes.  I ride three or four mornings a week, always at least 10 miles per trip and never want to come home, but time restraints interfere with the joyous song endorphins sing in my head – damn the clock!

Every ride’s a new experience.  I know each time I take off down my driveway and feel my shoes click into my pedals, that a life adventure will unfold before me; I’ll learn something new about man and/or nature.

I see all manner of insect and reptile.  We have a lot of grasshoppers this season; sometimes they hitch a ride on a t-shirt sleeve.  When I push really hard and get myself nice and winded (I love that feeling of pulling a breath to the very bottom of my lungs), I may be forced to breathe through my mouth.  This unconscious act of survival usually provides  protein snacks of no-see-’ems.  Yum!

I find myself occasionally swerving to miss snakes and lizards, especially in low-lying, wet areas.  This guy is really tiny and his square nose tells me he’s non-poisonous – mostly he’s dead – which accounts for being able to get this close to him.

Dogs are a constant problem. Ten years ago a very large dog (at 130 pounds – bigger than this gal) placed himself in front of my bike as I flew along at 26 mph.  After being launched like a bottle rocket, I got to enjoy an ambulance ride and a hospital visit with broken bones and whiplash that pokes at me even today if I overexert.  By all accounts, I came out better than the poor broken dog and my totaled bike.  Lesson learned: Leashless dogs scream, “BRAKES!” in my head.

This is Frisco’s “Awe shit!” hill.  I can make it all the way to the top around that corner and still further up, but I have to downshift on the way.  My son, Russell, and his girlfriend, Brooke, just snicker at me – this is nothing compared to the massive hills where they live in Austin.

The only moving spill I’ve ever taken on my bike was the “poor dog” incident.  I’m fairly new to clipless shoes and pedals.  I’m a clipless wonder with my right foot – it’s a total right-brain experience, no thought involved in connection and extraction; near perfection.  But, I’m a hopeless wonder with my left foot and managed to crash at zero miles per hour a couple days ago while trying to meld that left shoe to pedal.

Brooke, my wounds are nowhere as impressive as yours, so I cringe at how much pain you must be in!

4 thoughts on “My Neighborhood (Part 3)

  1. Summer, beer, research hats – there’s a time for everything. Keep writing, keep posting, whatever your topic!

  2. Oh no, you’re poor knee! No fall is a fun fall. When I first got clipless, I was riding with a class and we rolled up to a stop sign. I couldn’t get that darn left foot out fast enough and toppled right over! Ha!

  3. Ah! Life’s little pleasure & adventure. I chuckled at the account of the grasshoppers attack – I had the same experience when biking in the woods in MN. There was no way out but to keep pedaling with my head down until I got off the track. Felt like a target in a video game.

    Hope your wound heals quickly.

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