A Bear Doesn’t Always @&$* In The Woods

It’s taken a couple of days to recover from the frenzied pace of the second annual “Mini Tri Camp” at Torch Lake. Again Diane and Mike were gracious enough to open up the “cottage” to several of us for triathlon training. Many of us came up separately so we had to stay up late and make sure everyone got in safely. I’d say we huddled around the campfire, but actually we sat in lounge chairs on the deck, drank some wine, and told lots of stories.

I expected everyone to get up bright and early and be in the water swimming by 7 AM. Not so! We didn’t get up until a quarter to eight and we sat around drinking coffee until someone finally suggested we may want to swim before the wind started. We straggled into the water at around nine and didn’t swim very hard nor very far. We straggled out of the water the same way we went in and it was on to “the bike”. Triathletes know that the transition from swim to bike is important and you do it as fast as you can…sort of like controlled chaos. I figured the rest of the group would practice the transition, which we all refer to as T-1, and I would watch since I’m still not biking. After a while I did point out to the group that “T-1” was approaching 45 minutes so, apparently, that part of training wasn’t in the camp plans.

I kind of expected everyone to ride the 45 miles around the lake and go for a 20 or 30 minute transition run afterwards. Again, not so. Three people rode around the lake. A few people rode down to Alden where they were celebrating Alden Days. They didn’t turn right around and come back, so I’m guessing they stopped and perused the vendor tents. Another group rode to Central Lake (around six miles away) and shopped until the credit card started to melt and rode back happy but poorer. I think only one or two people did the transition run. The rest filtered in, went back down to the lake, and rested in the sun. Transition from bike to run, also known as T-2, also failed to make the camp syllabus, so I guess T-2 practice is now going on 5 days.

We did get out and run on Sunday morning and followed it up with a cool off in the lake. A couple of people swam at least some distance while others, including me, washed off the sweat in the lake and rested from the long run in the easy chairs. Between the naps and laying in the sun, everyone made a full recovery and no one was injured.

On the way home, about a mile North of the first Cadillac exit, we saw a bear standing by a fence near the expressway. Yes, we actually did see a bear and alcohol was not involved in the sighting. I’ve driven Northern Michigan and the Upper Peninsula for several years and I can count the wild bears I’ve seen from the car on one hand. Now I’ll have to grow a sixth finger if I ever want to say that again. So now when you ask someone a question with an obvious answer and they say “Is the Pope Catholic?” or “Does a bear @&$* in the woods?”, you can say “Not always!”. Well, I guess the Pope is always Catholic, but you know what I mean.

Just (Finally Rested Up From Tri Camp) Jack

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