Our scheduled ride to the soccer game on Saturday June 12, 2004 was cancelled due to rain. When Bob and I started out it was a misty rain, but after just a few minutes it started to rain harder so we cancelled the ride. I ended up riding with Pete and Steve the next day Sunday June 13, 2004. We decided to head north on the trail and eat somewhere in Lake Orion. We hadnít gone north on the trail for a while, it was in nice shape and it always feels good to head north. It doesnít take but just a few miles to get that ďout in the middle of nowhereĒ feeling. Not sure if everyone feels the same way I do, but I really do enjoy the peaceful quiet feeling I get when I head north on the trail.
Now that Steve and Pete both have electronic speedometer on their bikes we have had a recent surge in interest in going fast and keeping track of our maximum speed. Steve did call me and leave a message with the ride statistics from this day. Total distance 19.4 miles average speed 10.4 mph and a maximum speed of 141.3 mph. I am not sure how the number 141.3 was achieved. Steve did take a spill on this ride and possibly his front tire with the sensor may have spun a little faster than normal during the fall, but 141.3 even I have a hard time swallowing this one. More about Steveís little accident later.
The trail was very busy, a lot of people out walking, jogging, bicycling and we even ran across a couple of mounted police on horseback. About half way on the trail there is a small dirt path along the right side that takes you up above the trail about 15 to 20 feet. Rich and I had ridden up there before and I thought Pete and Steve might find the view interesting so I suggested we all take the path. Well the path was much more over grown with weeds and bushes making it very difficult to pass. We stuck with it and got to the top. Right when we got to the top I saw a small group of wild turkey crossing the path about 40 feet in front of us. Steve rushed up with his camera, but by the time he got there they had disappeared into the bush. We took a few pictures up there and Pete took this opportunity to yell down at a few people passing by, just because that is what he does. We considered riding straight down the steep hill down to the trail, but we all chickened out and rode down the side opposite from where we came.
The weather this day was beautiful, warm and sunny. No concern about rain this day.
We continued on to downtown Lake Orion to check out if there had been any progress on the burned down Sagebrush Cantina. They have started clearing out the area in preparation for rebuilding I assume. We were just riding around Lake Orion when Bob called in on the cell phone. Bob had been doing some shopping at Home Depot in the general area and asked where were planning to stop for lunch. We decided on the Hamlin Pub on Lapeer Road and told Bob we would meet him there.
It was shortly after we turned around and started heading south toward the Pub when Steve had his accident. The good news is Steve did not hurt himself badly, but he did endure a few cuts and bruises. If you have a queasy stomach I have to warn you about some of the pictures Steve took of his injuries. They really arenít bad, but just in case Melissa ever reads this story and then decides to check out the corresponding pictures I donít want her fainting without warning. We were on the east sidewalk of Lapeer Road heading south. We were in single file with Pete in the lead, Steve right behind and I was third. Well Pete approached a street feeding out onto Lapeer and an elderly lady was coming up to Lapeer in her car. As typically she wasnít looking for anyone coming from her right on the sidewalk and at the last minute she noticed Pete and she slammed on her brakes. Well Pete didnít notice her right away either and he came to a quick stop as well. With Steve stopping short in front Steve also hit his brakes and at the same time flew off his bike onto the sidewalk. I just slowed down and pulled over to the right to avoid running him over. The crash looked really bad from my angle. It appeared to me that Steve was leading with his face. I was afraid he was going to scrape his face against the pavement. He kind of flew off his bike in a horizontal position, not quite the head over heels style that Pete likes to employ. At the last second Steve was able to tuck his body it and pull his head up. He ended up scraping the side of one of his knees and bruising the side of the other knee. He also cut his hand on the palm side kind of between the first two fingers. His hand was bleeding more than his legs. I can only venture a guess that he has a few more assorted bruises as a result of this unique method of coming to a quick stop. I method I donít recommend to anyone, other than Pete. We were close to the pub when this happened. I carry a small first aid kit in my rear basket just for these type occasions. Honesty I thought Pete would be the first to take advantage of the first aid kit, but none the less I was glad I had it for Steve to use. Our waitress at the Pub was also kind enough to bring a bag of ice and Steve rotated the ice from leg to leg during lunch. One more thing worth noting was the incredible dexterity Steve exhibited while falling. He was holding his camera in one of his hands and he was able to hang onto the camera preventing it form even the slightest scratch. Quite amazing. The lady in the car was in shock, she was afraid to move after she witnessed Steve taking his tumble. After a Steve picked himself up and checked out to make sure all his body parts were still intact and functional, Pete indicated to the lady that Steve was OK and she finally pulled away. I could tell by the look on Peteís face exactly what he was thinking, ďYou call that a fall, that wasnít anything, Iíve done much better.Ē
Bob did drive over and meet us for lunch and the four of us had a nice lunch at the Pub. At first Pete wasnít going to let Bob sit at out table because he had driven over in his car and not ridden his bike. We stayed there a little longer than normal to give Steve a chance to clean and treat his wounds. One thing I can say about Steve is he sure has a great attitude. The accident didnít effect his appetite or his god given ability to verbally express his very thought in great detail as only Steve can. But seriously we were all very glad Steve didnít get hurt badly. Thirty five years ago a fall like this wouldnít be a big deal, but now it could put one of out of commission for a long time. When you are out driving donít forget to look to right for pedestrians or bicycles when you are either leaving a parking lot or turning onto another street. You never know there may be a member of the PCT Bicycle Club approaching.
After lunch Steve reported he was OK to ride home. We took a different and interesting way home. Instead of getting back on the trail we headed south on east side of Lapeer Road. There was sidewalk for a while but then we had to start riding across parking lots, grass and vacant lots. We never did have to actually ride in the main street. We went through some subdivisions heading east. Pete wanted to end up a the Blockbuster at Silverbell and Adams. We ended up on Gunn Road and took that for a while. We went though more subdivisions and ended up going through Meekís neighbor hood to get to Adams. After a short stop to Blockbuster we continued home. Pete offered a swim in his pool which sounded great since it was very warm outside, but Max was playing in the Little League all star game that afternoon and I had to get home to be able to leave on time.
Still havenít rescheduled the Red Coat Tavern ride to Royal Oak. Stay tuned we will be selecting a new date soon.
Jonathan and Mark's soccer team had their last game on Saturday June 12, 2004. We had a perfect record, undefeated without any ties either, going into this game. We were playing the same team we played the first game of the year. We won that first game easily and I was afraid our team might be a little over confident. I knew the other team was going to come out and play us very hard. It was a close game. We had a 1-0 lead at half time. They came out and scored a goal in the second half to tie it up. This game could have gone either way, this team played us much better than the first time. With less than a minute to go in the game the other team did a hand ball about 20 feet outside of the penalty area. I yelled to Jonathan to get in the wall and take his teammates. This is something we had discussed at practice. Jonathan and many other of our players got in the wall with the guys from the other team. The other team was obviously confused. Mark was lining up to take the direct kick. Just before Mark kicked the ball all of our guys in the wall dropped to the ground giving Mark a few open lanes to shoot through. Markís kick was absolutely perfect. The kick was so good he probably would have scored without our guys in the wall, but it sure didnít hurt and it definitely confused the other team. The kick was high about 8 to 10 inches below the cross bar. The goalie got his fingers on the ball, but it was too hard of a kick and it went right through into the net giving us a one goal lead with only about 30 seconds left to play. Needless to say it was a very exciting finish to a great season.
Check out this link for pictures from this ride thanks to Steve.
Thanks for reading about our latest ride.