Â I thought I would start by clearing up some confusion about last week’s epistle. We are not buying the “pumpkin trailer” nor the “cracker shack” we sent pictures of last week. The house is on the corner of Hudson Avenue and Old Dixie Highway, is a typical old Florida shack, and will be the future home for a real estate office. The pumpkin trailer is on one of the canals near brother Bob’s house, is in the $175,000 range and, believe it or not, looks much worse in person than in the picture.
The one we are buying is in a mobile home park and is actually quite nice, but much less money. We’ll give park life a try to see if we like it. If not, we’ll make a change a year or two down the road with not much ventured. We have several friends in Club Wildwood, some from Hastings, and others who are avid bikers (cyclists, not Hell’s Angels).
So now for the good news bad news stories. There are two. First of all, the bad news (to me at least). There won’t be a Tiburon Mile in September this year. For those of you who don’t know, it’s a mile swim from Angel Island to Tiburon in San Francisco Bay that I did last year with my son, Matt, and was scheduled to do the week after the bike wreck of ’03 but couldn’t. The next one will be in September 2006 and I don’t know why they’re skipping a year. The good news is that my son Matt and I have signed up for the Alcatraz Sharkfest Swim. As the name implies it’s a 1 1/2 mile swim from Alcatraz Island to Aquatic Park in San Francisco. The bad news is that it takes place on the same day as the Muncie Endurathon.
The second story has to do with this morning’s long run. My schedule shows 150 minutes and, as many of you know, I have some issues going on in my left ankle area. The good news is that I had an excellent run. It was one of those days when everything felt good and, although I could feel the ankle problem every step, it didn’t hurt enough to stop me from enjoying the day…enjoying the day up until 144 minutes and 58 seconds.
I was on my way back and was in the last mile on Sea Ranch Drive which goes from US 19 to the condo. It’s a two lane street with sidewalk on one side. The street has no shoulders so I always run on the sidewalk. About a half mile from the condo I noticed a pickup truck going west. He slowed, made a u-turn, drove onto the sidewalk and parked the truck there so he could go to a garage sale across the street.
He was about 25 feet in front of me and I didn’t know what he was doing so I fixed my attention on him ready to jump out of the way to avoid being hit. The bad news is that the sidewalks aren’t well maintained and I stubbed my toe on one of the spots where the cement had heaved from tree roots. The good news is that, contrary to the theory of gravity, my feet caught up with the rest of my body and I didn’t fall. The bad news is that my big toe on that battered left foot started to throb. It’s color is similar to a concord grape and, no doubt, I will lose the nail eventually.
The second bad news part of that story is that I had to leave the sidewalk to run around the truck and ran through the “dog crap strip”. That area is about eight feet of grass between the sidewalk and the street. Dozens of people walk their dogs up and down Sea Ranch every day and use that part for their bathroom (the dogs…not the people). As considerate as they seem, most of them don’t clean up when their dog leaves a deposit. Between the throbbing toe and the good chance of slipping and sliding in doggie doo, I stopped 5 minutes and 2 seconds short of my 150 minutes. I walked, or I should say limped, the rest of the way in. My attitude’s improving since I didn’t use any bad words to let the young man know what I thought of his driving skills or his parentage.
Our plan is to leave Florida on Thursday, the 24th, and we should be home sometime on Good Friday. Robert works through Wednesday and plans to drive from West Palm Beach here that night so we can bring his bicycle back. So this is probably the last e-mail for a while. As always, I will miss writing them as much as many of you will miss reading them. For those of you who think they’re a nuisance, the good news is that you’ll hit the delete button one fewer time each week.
Until the next trip,
Just (I Hope Michigan Warms Up Soon) Jack