Tuesday, August 16, 2016

It Was One Year Ago Tonight...

Tammy got us tickets to see Jonny James and the Hall of Fames, a Led Zeppelin tribute band playing at Chanhassen Dinner Theatre last Friday night. We had a really nice time. Led Zeppelin has been one of Tammy's favorite rock bands since her high school days so I was happy to make a date-night of it with her even though I'd have rather seen a Supertramp tribute band. Just kidding -- no, actually, I'm serious if you really wanna know.

I've been getting out for some nice rides on my road bike and pushing myself more than I have in awhile thanks to my Garmin 820 that I mentioned briefly in a previous post. There's so much gee-whiz stuff associated with this piece of technology that I'm still trying to get my head around it all. It's even got crash detection. If the unit is slammed hard so that it abruptly stops its forward movement it will send a text message to Tammy (via bluetooth connection with my LG G4) to tell her I'm in trouble. I don't honestly know how I feel about this. Before the text is sent out I have 30 seconds (or thereabouts) to cancel it in case it's a false alarm. Between that feature and a new tracking feature on Strava she'll be able to rest assured that I'm still on the move and doing okay.

I'm mostly enjoying the Live Segments on my Garmin 820. Live Segments are a Strava feature incorporated with the data I receive out on the road from my Garmin. The segments allow me to compete against my previous best time or the efforts of others on a segment of highway or trail that someone has identified and labeled. It used to be that I wouldn't be able to see how my segment times compared until I got home and uploaded the data to Strava. Now I can instantaneously see on my Garmin 820 how my current effort compares with my previous best, the previous best of friends I'm connected with on Strava and the overall best time of some unknown (to me) rider who gets to brag that they're KOM -- King of the Mountain! It's great motivation.

Golfing has been going well and I'm staying injury free so I'm very pleased about that. I've signed up to play in the retirees tournament in Farmington in two weeks. I'm looking forward to it.

I left home early Saturday morning to meet up with Tyler at the Cuyuna mountain bike trails 2.5 hours north in Crosby near Lake Mille Lacs. The trails are a lot of fun but they're mostly two-way so you have to check your speed some, especially in the corners (watch the video below to see what I'm referring to). We did 32 miles of trails and still didn't hit them all.

I stopped to fill up at a Holiday station south of Lake Mille Lacs on the way home and as I was walking back to my car I had a near-miss with a fellow controller, Brian Jones, who was headed toward a pump to fill up on his way back home from his cabin. It's such a small world sometimes. He was pulling a trailer loaded with plants. We chatted for awhile and I assured him I'd be at the next "team meeting" at the local pub in Farmington near work where the guys meet weekly on Wednesdays at 2:30 but I've since become part of a foursome that's teeing off at 2:32 Wednesday afternoon -- so...

The red clay from the Cuyuna trails leaves a telltale signature that you've been riding there and I'm never in a hurry to wash it off -- sorta like guys in their 4-wheelers who go mudding and aren't in a hurry to clean the mud off their trucks.

It was one year ago tonight and more accurately, one year ago to the hour as I write this that I was likely leaving for work and my final shift as an air traffic controller, not realizing it would be my last. I'd wake up from the all night shift to work in the yard that afternoon and it was there that I first noticed there was a problem with my hearing. My mother was in her last weeks of life and we were still adjusting to having Tammy's mother live with us and all that that entailed. We had so much coming at us from all directions. Those were some difficult times but we managed by taking it one day at a time; maybe that's why I'm now enjoying my retired life to its fullest. Tammy isn't quite there yet but she will be soon.

Time to walk the pups!


Annamae Miller said...

A year, time does pass quickly! Thanks for making tech interesting. To be honest, I didn't know what a fitbit or garmin was before my MN trip and everyone seemed to have one. I think the alert is a great idea, especially for solo rides. I am sure Tammy would rather have a potential false alarm and know she will be alerted if there is a real problem. Re:video- I love the near miss, I imagine there is a bike length rule of thumb to avoid rear ending in a situation like that.I enjoy the blog! It seems like they insert hazards at the end of the trail when one might have their guard down.

Kevin Gilmore said...

Yes, I'm warming up to the idea of leaving the crash detection on although my misgivings about it were that I'd rather she be notified that I've experienced a problem after I've been found and helped rather than her racing to the scene while worried that I'm on my own. I think that's why I'm reluctant to embrace it just yet. Ha! Yes -- fitbits are everywhere but you have an LG G4 and it will also track your steps so you don't need the thing on your wrist as long as you keep your phone in your pocket.

Cuyuna is one of the few trails where there is two-way traffic. Typically they're one direction. I've heard some talk about Cuyuna expanding their trail system so as to eliminate the 2-way traffic. That will be nice. Until then I think I'll avoid riding there on a Saturdays when it's at its busiest.

I'm glad you enjoy my blog and thanks very much for your comment!