Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Personal Best

It was already heating up today when Jack and I left on our bikes at just after 7am. We did a ride that he'd done before, but I'd not done. First we rode the 8 miles to Saguaro National Park East (which I had done twice), stopping a couple of times along the way, while we tried to figure out what was making the dragging sound on my bike. It really sounded like the brake pads were touching my wheels, but.. wasn't the case.

This remained a mystery till we got to the first shelter at the entrance to the park. I said something about that noise on my bike, as we entered, and a nice and friendly fellow cyclist asked, "Mind if I have a look?" :) He adjusted something on my crank arm and said that I should be fine till I can get a tuneup. Cool.

After a pleasant rest there and refilling our water stores, we took off on the park's Loop Drive, the part that I had not done. As you can see at this link, there are some cool hills here, beginning with an amazing downhill run. I did stop twice on the big uphill. Once I stopped because I was going just 3.3 mph and the bike wasn't tracking well, so I walked it for a piece, till I got my lungs back. At another point on the huge hill, I had to stop, because I was getting asthma tightness in my chest and had to rest and relax my lungs for a bit.

But I did it! And when we were just about done with the loop, we detoured and took the picnic loop, too.

By the time we got back to Far Horizons, we had logged 25 miles -- a personal best for me! YAY! It was 95° when we got back at 11:30 am, and it warmed eventually to 103° for a high. I know what they say about "dry heat," but .. 103 is just plain hot.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

The Heat is On

Yep.. it neared 100° here in Tucson today! The summer heat is on the way! I enjoyed my day today, with no sign of Friday's agonizing abdominal pain. I began the day with my walk with Maddy. Then I showered and readied myself for.. brace yourself .. church.

Jack's stepmother Mary invited me to go with her and Jack to their church today for the service, followed by a potluck luncheon. The last time that I'd been to an actual church, for something other than a wedding or a funeral, was when I was about 10, when Mom took us to the Presbyterian church. Of course I remember nothing of that experience.

This time, it was interesting and fun, though. I really like Jack, of course, and his stepmother is a sweet lady, so it was good to be with them and to meet their more pious friends. It was a Methodist church with a pretty free-thinking minister. He did make what I consider to be a pretty serious error, though, when he was telling the congregation that "repent" means "turn." I think that he may have been thinking about "reverse." Happily for Jack and Mary, I did not stand up and correct the minister, though the error did confound the message for me.

The potluck was fun. I don't know when I've ever seen a group of people eat so much food! My favorite thing was a most unattractive but amazingly delicious black cherry jello concoction. It contained dark cherries, pineapple, walnuts (I think), and coconut. It was a dark purple and appeared to have twigs floating on top (the coconut), and I would never take it to a potluck, because it was so .. ugly. But what a surprise when I dared take some!

I caught up on email a bit and then headed to the pool -- the only place to be on a day like today!

John's on the mend, and today enjoyed a nearly pain-free day. It is wonderful to think that Dr. Shroeder was actually able to fix his back. I'm so happy for John!

For supper tonight, Jack and I went to the Texas Roadhouse. He'd won a gift certificate from there at the Livestrong ride, and so we redeemed it. I had, I believe, the best filet I've ever had. I ate just half, so I get to enjoy it again tomorrow! :)