If it’s not one thing, it’s another (almost-daily diary issues & lack of updates)

Near the top of Kings. The deer on the left did something funny; they walked across the road in front of us, trying to get away, moved up the hillside and we saw them again on the other side of the hairpin. Kind of like how spectators at the Tour de France rush from the downside of a hairpin to the upside as the riders go past.
It’s bad enough that I haven’t kept things up here as I should; the “almost daily” part of this seems like a ship that sailed a very long time ago. Probably two years ago, and I can look to some strange stuff that went on then (not bike stuff) for some of the reason. And then, when I try to get caught back up, the webhost for the diary is down! So I can’t update when I want to update!

It’s been a really rough summer, having to watch the ‘Tour from the sidelines (well, no, in-person it would be on the sidelines; I’m watching from 6,000 miles away). And then the craziness that Covid-19 has brought to the bike biz, and add to that trying to get things moving for the shop move (we’ve been paying full rent for the new place since April; that’s going to come to maybe $90,000 by the time we move in, and I can think of a lot better ways I’d rather be spending that money than on an empty building!).

Love that needle on the bee stinger “assembly.” Ouch.
But for now, we’ll cover yesterday, and why I didn’t sleep much last night. A nearly idyllic morning on Kings, albeit alone, until I got stung by a bee just as I got to the wide-open clearing with 1.5 miles to go. It must have hit my helmet because the instant it bounced off my arm it managed to sting me. No way that could have happened if it hadn’t already been angry and prepared. It’s like, c’mon, you’ve got to be kidding. All the stuff that’s been going on, and now I get stung by a bee? The good thing is that it was, in fact, a bee, not a yellow jacket. I react really badly to yellow jackets. But you could see the stinger and see it pumping venom into my arm (one of those few times I wish I didn’t have “readers” on my sunglasses that allow me to see things close up!). I know enough to scrape it out, not try to pull it, which would pump more venom into my arm. Even saved the stinger part and put it on top of my garmin so I could get a photo when I felt like it.

I considered turning around right then but no, it wasn’t a yellow jacket, let’s just keep going and see how things feel. I stopped a bit further up, to check up on my arm and get a photo of the stinger (it later fell off my garmin but it was a scary enough image to remember without having to save it). Kept going, got passed by a few guys, the the slower of the three I managed to catch back up to and gradually grind on past. Got to the top, exchanged pleasantries (wondered if they were going to be doing West Old LaHonda) and, when it turned out they weren’t going to be heading the way I normally would, I decided to head back home, straight down the hill.

This morning, I’m suffering a bit from lack of sleep because that arm (left) has been itching pretty badly. Allegra helps. It’s not swelling too much, but it’s not much fun. And that’s kind of how a lot of things have been lately- not much fun. It’s time to have some fun.

Blue Skies take some of the sting out of being Jeff’ed

Thursdays are getting tough; nobody at the start, but it’s become the thing lately that Jeff catches up to me about 1/3rd of the way up Kings, goes flying ahead and waits at the top to torture me some more. Today I almost “escaped”; as I was emerging at the top of Huddart Park, Jeff was just 100 meters or so down the hill. Had I been just the slightest bit slower, Jeff would have overshot me and never known I was behind him.

Last week’s “air”
Of course, maybe I could have raced after him and caught up. Yeah, right! Jeff at idle is a pretty taxing wheel to try and keep in sight, much less hang onto. With George or Kevin (pilot), they’ll often ride a steady pace that I can kind of “launch” from, doing a hard effort for a minute or two before throttling down and waiting for them to catch up. Not with Jeff. Not. Ever. And now he’s even in my Strava age group! And just did a 36 minute time up West Alpine. Yikes.

But having breathable are makes things seem so much nicer.