Wednesday, May 12, 2010

I Got Caught

I have never been asked to show my train ticket on Utah Trax.  Oli has never been asked to show his ticket.  I don't think Brent has ever been asked to show his ticket.  I don't know anyone who's been asked to show a ticket.  Right when I approached the Gallivan Center ticket machine, my train arrived.  Swoosh, right past me, to a fast, smooth stop.  If I miss the train, then I miss the connecting bus, then I miss taking Oli to swim team, which is the whole reason I left work early today.  I took my chances thinking, "no one ever checks for the train ticket."  Wouldn't ya' know.  About 10 minutes into my ride, here comes the uniformed officer asking for tickets.  

I played the honesty card.  Here's how it went, roughly.
Officer:  Ticket please.
Me: I was running to catch the train, and didn't have time to buy a ticket.  I'm connecting to a bus, so I'll have to pay there.  I promise I wasn't looking for a free ride - I just couldn't be late.
Officer: I'm not responsible for your scheduling problems.  You could have waited for the next train in 15 minutes.  Do you know what the fine is for not having a ticket?
Me:  No, I'm kind of new at this.  I was hoping to buy a ticket at one of the stops, but the train doesn't stop long enough.
Officer:  One-hundred and thirty-four dollars.
Me:  I promise I wasn't trying to get a free ride.  I'll be paying to get on the bus in Sandy.  I'm really really sorry.

Well, he was nice.  He gave me a verbal warning.  Actually he was kind of grumpy and not really nice at all - except that he could've slapped a $134 fine on me.

I was sick to my stomach the whole rest of the train ride, paranoid that another officer would board, and more than a little embarrassed.  I contemplated getting off, buying a ticket, waiting for the next train, missing my connecting bus, etc.  I've never felt such relief to get off that train and pay my $2.00 for the bus.  I'll never do that again.  Never ever. Note to self.  Leave the bike shop at least 15 minutes before train arrival.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Conversation With Myself

Self, it's time for a real bike ride. Kids are down at the school fiesta, there's enough daylight. It's been since last Fall since you've ridden.

Okay, found clothes. Found shoes. No those are road shoes, where are my mountain shoes? Ah hah, there. Cell phone in back, right pocket. Camera - just in case I spot the mountain goats that Brent saw up there yesterday - back center pocket. Helmet, gloves, sunglasses.

Bike. Which one is mine? Oh yeah, white saddle.
Pump up tires. This floor pump really gives my arms, especially my triceps, a workout! I should release the air and pump up tires every day.

Seat bag. Oh where is a seat bag. Found one - seems to have everything in it. Why won't this go under my saddle? This must be the wrong strap with this seat bag. This stupid thing does NOT work! Daylight is burning. Forget the damn seat bag and hope I don't get a flat. Remember to ask Brent about the seat bag - or get me a new one from the shop.

Okay, 7:11pm. About a 70 minute ride. Should have enough daylight.

Seat height feels perfect. Thank you everyone for not messing with my seat.

Here we go. Feeling good.

First big hill. I hate this gravelly hill. My gut feels too big. Shouldn't have finished off Milly's tamale. Almost there. I can't believe the snap on my shorts is still holding.

Creepy, homeless-looking guy up ahead. Smile, "Hello", and slight cycling head nod. Sheesh, dude - you'd seem a lot less creepy if you said hi back.

Next nasty hill. Shorter, but steeper. I feel like I'm going to puke. I really must knock off 15 pounds. I always feel like that after that hill, right? Yes, I do. Ah, I love the short little rests between climbs on this trail.

Last nasty hill. What are all those people doing at the top? Hunker down. Keep pedaling. Oh my, they're cheering for me. I've never had a cheering squad on this ride.

Shoot I passed the spot where Brent saw two big horn sheep yesterday. I forgot to look.

Oh, now this is fun. Hardest part over. Few little climbs. Easy cheesy.

Ahhh, there are 2 deer. Get a photo. Stupid camera is out of battery. 

(Not my photo, but this is the valley view from the Y parking lot)  Turn-around spot for the normal, short ride. Plenty of cars at the Y parking lot. What time is it? 7:50pm. 40 minutes out. About 30 minutes back. I love this little ride. Wish my camera worked. Beautiful sunset. Shapely clouds decorating the sky. Here we go. I really gotta get rid of 15 pounds. Seriously.

Looking for big horn sheep. Cannot see them. Whoa, watch the trail, Self. The scenery is lovely, but stay on the trail. Couple of runners, couple of men on bikes. Why no women? There's my cheering squad again. Oh, don't cheer again, really.

This is nice. This is fun. Almost home. Made it. No flats. 8:23pm.

Thank you Gary Fischer Superfly for a lovely ride.
Thank you Utah for a lovely trail 15 seconds out my front door.
Thank you Brent J. Hulme for introducing me to this sport 20+ years ago.  Let's go for a ride together soon, okay?