Well, I’m sure many of you have been asking where I’ve been. Maybe not “many” since I have about ten readers but you know what I mean. As you know, a few weeks ago I burned my right hand pretty bad and couldn’t ride for a week. Then, on my first ride back I had a horrible time due to a calamity of events resulting from a flat. That debacle can be found back in Ride 21 and 1/3. Then, last week was a total scheduling mess.

All of my daughters, and my wife, had an array of events going on that ate up all my time. I also had something eating up my time as well. What were those events? Well, the youngest daughter had ballet recital on Monday, the oldest daughter had choir practice every day for a week in preparation for a trip she left for on Saturday (no, I didn’t get to ride on Saturday either), and my wife started a new business which ate up a bunch of time. What business did my wife start? Well, she used to dance but hasn’t been able to for a year or so. She’s also very handy with crafts (i.e. scrapbooking, projects, etc.). So, she combined the two and now makes designer pointe shoes. What’s a designer pointe shoe? Well, it’s a ballet pointe shoe that has been modified to either match a dance costume or to resemble a character from a movie (Cinderella, Ariel, Snow White, etc.). Remember the recital I mentioned? Well, that was the debut of her shoes and it was a resounding success. She was busy for three straight days selling shoes to kids, parents, grandparents, you name it. She did very, very well selling many shoes straight off the table and taking orders for others. She’s been able to connect with a local dance store and has also started selling shoes through that store. Needless to say, she’s been busy. If any of you have someone that might be interested in something like this as a momento, or souveneir, here’s her website (still under construction): http://pointes4you.com

What have I been doing? Aside from my normal job as a project scheduler and cost analyst, I joined my father-in-law in a business venture. I’ve joined a company as a distributor for a new health food product that’s to be released in September. It is a network marketing gig but the potential of this product is unbelievable. The product is The Signature Grain and is a 100% natural, FDA approved food, that contains all the nutrients and minerals you need to live a healthy lifestyle. One of the big factors here is that it’s already received food status by the FDA. That’s something Flax hasn’t achieved in over 40 years of trying. Who is The Signature Grain for? It’s for everybody. Here’s a link to my website that explains all about it: http://pointe4you.lifemax.net. Like I said, the public release isn’t until September but the product is available now if you want it. Just contact me if you’re interested in either using it or becoming a distributor so you can earn some extra income. Also, if you want to learn more directly from two of the top men in the company, there’s a free webinar tonight from 9-10 PM. Just click the following link to register and then follow the instructions in the email you get. Here’s the link: https://www2.gotomeeting.com/register/733053465

Wow, I didn’t mean for that part to be that long but that’s what I’ve been up to and haven’t ridden much. I was determined to get back in the saddle though and did so this morning. I didn’t get much sleep last night but I wasn’t going to let that stop me.

As usual, the alarm went off at 5:00 AM. I didn’t want to get up. I rolled out, got dressed, and headed outside to gear up. I got off fine and it took me a couple of miles to settle in. I expected this after having not ridden in about 3 weeks. The hamstrings felt a little tight but loosened up after about 5 miles.

After about 20 minutes I started to feel pretty good and was able to open it up a little. At this pointe (pardon the pun) I saw the guy I normally see running and a short time later saw a rider up ahead of me pulled over to the side of the road. It looked like he was messing with his IPOD (or something similar). This guy was lite up. Jaxgtr, I think this is the guy Jim (the guy you met Saturday) was talking about. He was lite up like a christmas tree.

Anyway, I went by him and continued on trying to push a good pace. As I approached my turn around pointe (I know, I’ll stop) I looked over my shoulder to check for traffic before moving over to the inside turn lane. The christmas tree dude was coming up behind me. I turned around and headed the opposite direction. The other guy turned too but made a left into a business park.

That’s when I heard the gun shots. At first I thought it was maybe a car backfiring because I only heard one. Than I heard several more in rapid succession. No mistake, that was gunfire. Sounded like a small caliber. Weird place to be hearing gunfire though since there was nothing around but office parks, homes, and apartments. Weird. I’ll have to check the local news and see if anything was reported.

As I’m heading back I see another bicyclist up ahead of me at a distance of about 300 yards. I saw him/her turn the same direction I was going to go. This was awesome, a rabbit to chase on the way home. I continued pushing it in an attempt to try and catch him/her. By the time I got to the end of No Man’s Land I’m not sure I had closed the gap at all. I lost site of him in some turns but picked him up again as I entered the last long straightaway home. I shifted to the big gear and got up over 20 mph in an attempt to close the gap. I couldn’t do it. He was either too fast, too far ahead, or I just wasn’t ready yet. Maybe all three.

I see the rider move to the inside turn lane, and because of the location, I figured it was the guy on the recumbent I had seen before. Well, the rider did a 180 and started back toward me. As we approach I realize it’s the guy that I had passed earlier and who had turned left while I did a 180 at my turnaround point (see, I stopped). I was like, “What?” How did he get ahead of me? My guess is that the office park he turned into has a connection to a neighborhood that let him cut across in front of me. I’ll have to check that out sometime. Anyway, I slowed it down a bit and continued on home.

Well, it was great to be out riding again. I needed it. My body needed it. It felt really good and I turned in some good numbers. Here they are: 13.25 miles, 49:53, 20.7 mph max, and 15.9 mph avg. The 15.9 avg is a new personal best. Surprising after having not ridden for almost 3 weeks. I also broke the 300 mile mark since starting Biking To Live.