Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Going home


Sorry I know it has been awhile, but I have had a pretty busy week.

Wednesday May 21st, at 4:00 am my alarm went off and I groggily drove to the Ontario airport. I haven’t been home in five months and I was extremely excited. So excited I didn’t sleep at all which made for a long day of travel. Even longer is the fact that I live in the middle of no where, and to fly into Pellston, the small airport by my house it would have cost me over $1500 so I had to fly into Grand Rapids. So on top of the time change and my two layovers, when I got to Michigan at 7:00 pm my mom and I still had a four hour drive ahead of us! You know its love when your mother will spend eight hours of her day driving just to see you.

Ever since I left back in December I have had a fear that my then five month old Great Dane puppy would totally forget me. It would just break my heart, and I was hoping that he would at least remember my voice from the couple of times my mom has put the phone up to his ear and let me talk to him (maybe I shouldn’t admit that? Hahaha). Thankfully when I walked into my house Frankie woke up and came to greet me before my dad or brothers did. I bent down, though not very far since he is up to 119 lbs now and he just put his head in my lap and hugged me for ten minutes, till he got tired and went back to sleep. I was so happy my baby remembered me. The next day was a busy one with meeting the new baby donkeys, visiting with my family who came to visit and of course breaking in my bike and packing.

6:00 am Friday morning (that would be 3:00 California time) I got up to leave for Canada. My dad and I drove up to Sault Ste Marie where we met up with my friend Jessi’s dad and from there left for Montreal. I spent my second full day of travel in a week mostly sleeping. Saturday was just practiced and learning the track. Did I mention that in Montreal that French is the native language? So just signing up was a challenge, not to mention figuring out when we were supposed to ride because I couldn’t understand the announcer. Sitting in the staging area way too early I looked around for someone to ask what was going on. Happy to hear the man behind me speaking English my smile soon faded when I realized mini parents aren’t just in the States as I heard a father telling his 65 rider why everyone is so much better than him. I would like to see him hold the gas on off of those rutted jumps and charge into the corners. That’s why retired pros will always find jobs training kids because honestly parents, if you can’t get on a bike and show your kid how to do it, they aren’t going to listen or respect your opinion. Yelling at them and putting them down really isn’t going do anything but make them resent riding.

Anyways…Race day the track looked so good, to my joy they over watered it making practice a mud fest, with super deep ruts. Just the way I like it. The first moto I started off in third and just kind of paced Jacqueline Ross in 2nd and Heidi Cooke in first. A couple laps in J Ro passed for the lead and I passed for 2nd. After a NCE (near crash experience) in practice off of one of the many chopped out rutted jump faces I admit I was being a wimp off of the jumps and was losing time there. But luckily I made up for it on the rest of the track and passed for the lead with three laps to go. It must have been an exciting race to watch, because it was for the three of us. The second moto I finally pulled a holeshot and got out to a comfortable lead. Then to my horror when I went to lap a girl on the outside of a sweeper she looked right at me and pinned it into me! She proceeded by cutting me off on the face of the next jump so I couldn’t do it. I went from having a comfortable lead to getting passed!!! I passed Ross back right away but rode so tight after that just expecting every lapper was out to get me. As they say negative thoughts lead to negative actions and with 2 laps to go I tipped over in a corner trying to get around a lapper who was in “my line.” I of course blamed it on the first girl, saying if she wouldn’t have held me up I would have passed the other girl before that corner…Of course as much as it sucks that’s racing. I finished third, or as the announcer says “turd” and got 2nd overall.

The drive home was longer than normal, and I don’t just mean because of the typical tension after throwing away a win. It actually took us longer, like a lot longer, to get home. The alternator on the expedition went out, and it took us one battery, 2 alternators and my dad telling the car mechanic what was wrong, to fix it. Once again I didn’t get home until 11pm, Monday night a full 31 hours after leaving the track. That left me only a few hours to sleep wake up early to go to the chiropractor get my back and ribs put back into place and leave for the airport. I didn’t land back in California until 1 am, and woke up early the next day to test my race bike and get ready for Hangtown. Oh yes I have been busy, and haven’t spent much time in front of this evil computer.

It was great being home if only for a day though. I have missed my family very much, and just the fresh air of northern Michigan. And of course my sand track! So many things change when you leave for 5 months, not just the size of my dog, but the size of my little brother (he lost weight) and my older brother’s gas tank! Yeah somehow in the time I was gone my brother Terry went from motocrosser to hare scrambler, which means of course the over sized tank. I was almost embarrassed to see his bike with bark busters and a desert tank next to mine in the garage. Those two hour, half trail half moto races sound like a lot of fun, and as much as I’d love to try one someday I told Terry I would rather take my chances at losing time by stopping than using one of those hideous things.

1 comment:

Casey said...

Glad you could enjoy your one day home. Ben is growing up to be too big. Next time you are in town, give me call we can walk Frankie. I love Great Danes, and he's adorable. Well maybe he'll walk us. And bring some California sunshine home with you... and keep me up to date on your MI races, I'm down for a road trip.