Sunday, November 02, 2008

Another week has passed in the land of sunshine and pleasant weather. A very nice week, highs in the seventies every day and no wind. I had a lot of assignments and the usual work load. On Tuesday, I shelved the books because the weather was too perfect not to be enjoying it. I went for a 10 mile spin on trails on and around campus. I rode a lot of trails for the first time and found a canyon that’s about a mile from the house that has an awesome trail going through it. I’m beginning to really enjoy this town and appreciate how it manages to coexist with nature by strictly enforcing tree survival, lighting, and other environmental laws. Cutting a tree down is a serious offense. Buildings are built around trees, parking lots are shaped around trees. Street lights are motion activated.

Friday I got on the bike again and rode another 15 miles of new trails. This time I found a truly spectacular canyon with 400 foot high walls. There’s a singletrack that goes through the bottom of it. Some places it’s less than 100 feet wide at the bottom; pretty cool stuff for a PA’er. I ran out of time and the sun was setting so I quit before I was done exploring. Friday I went trick or treating for canned food with the LAA club. All the food we collect gets donated locally. Nearly got sick from eating too much candy…

Saturday I rode back out to Walnut Canyon to finish gawking. I took the steep trail to the top of the canyon walls and got a good overview of the Flag area and endless conifer forests. Riding down the twisty knarly trail was a lot of fun, but the cliff-edge biking stuff is still a bit new to me, where any slip could have ‘grave’ consequences. On top of that, my fork blew out on the way down, covering my disc brakes with oil and greatly reducing their effectiveness. Everything was going great until the fork died and shelled my brakes, then I took a wrong turn and coasted a few miles downhill before realizing I had to backtrack it all, then I ran out of water and there is no water to be found anywhere in the bush around Flag. I still had an amazing afternoon even though the 10 mile 2 hour ride turned into 19 miles and three hours, getting me back home right at sunset.

Today is the day I will work on homework. I was hoping for bad weather so I wouldn’t be tempted to skimp on scholarly activities. A few rain clouds blew through, whited the peaks, and gave me a chance to work on organizing a fictional 40 person training meeting in Dublin, Ireland. This assignment kind of makes me itchy to go to Ireland and play golf. I’m to organize an international meeting, transport 40 people from all over the world with first-class provisions, provide Mercedes Benzes to pick them up at the airport, put them up at a five-star resort, give them spa treatments, provide meeting rooms and equipment, give them golf and pubs and restaurants, and get them back home. It’s a fun assignment, but a ton of work. I need to do a Word summary, an Excel cost analysis, and a PowerPoint presentation about it. Glad I don’t have to pay for it…

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