Saturday, August 20, 2016

No Good Deed Goes Unpunished...

Today's real-ride Tracking

 Today was a Saturday, and an unusual one at that.  We had NOTHING planned for the day other than laundry and getting ready to go back to the Mission Office tomorrow after Church.  Thus my plan for a bike ride actually materialized today.
My renewed goal has been to ride every day at least for a short ride to improve my A1C levels to keep my doctor happy and keep me healthy longer.
Today's ride was twofold:  Exercise and checking the ham radio harness to make sure it still worked.  I have one just like it on the tandem Terratrike 
that recently stopped transmitting, and the spare harness I tried to install also would not transmit.  So now I know the harness works and no dark magic has done them both in, I can safely order another replacement.  I guess.
I did my favorite around-home 10 mile ride out east to Mountain Valley Road, loop around Entranosa, and Back-Home ride today.  As I turned north on Mountain Valley I noticed a new sign at the gate of a neighbor's house that I admired greatly, enough to stop and photograph:
This appears to be a wooden sign with Laser-Etched graphics.  I need to stop in and find out where he got the sign....
Our new neighbors-to-be, the Schmutz Family, has been working like beavers building their own house on vacant land they recently purchased.  Their property is just north of this sign maybe 1/2 mile or so, and as I saddled up and rode on I was passed by a slow-moving concrete truck.  Knowing the Schmutzes were still pouring foundations and floors, I suspected the truck might be headed to their place, and as I crept up the gradual grade in too-low gears, my suspicions were realized.  The truck had pulled intto their lot and was already pouring concrete.  This family seems to have no slackers amongst them;  they were ALL bending over the concrete forms, mucking concrete into various corners and generally working their tails off.  Girls, boys, young and younger, all worked with a will and were covered with concrete dust and splatters from head to toe. 
Here is Lydia, Roo, Dad Steve, Bobby, and a cousin or so.  The guy on top of the concrete chute is the boss-man barking orders to all to pull here, do that, grab a shovel, etc.
I wound up helping hold the concrete chute for a while, and of  course within a few minutes I too was splattered from head to toe with cement muck , in spite of my minimal participation in the project.
The pour finally ended and I was able to resume my less-cumbersome ride back home.
Before I got to the bike my emergency phone rang a couple of times with missionary emergencies including flat tires and CD players that stopped working.
A fine day for a ride, indeed, even if I didn't come home clean.  I rarely do anyway.

Ride Started: 10:08 AM    Ride Ended:  1:04 PM
Beginning Battery Voltage:   13.0   Ending Voltage: 13.2  Lowest:  12.9 (Solar Panel WORKS today)
Lowest Temp  71 F      Highest Temp:  87 F 
Stats from the GPS:    Total Miles:  10.67
Overall average speed            Moving Avg               Max Speed
   4.4 MPH                             7.8 MPH                   29.9 MPH
Total Trip time                       Moving Time             Stopped Time
2 hours 26 mins                     1 hour 22 mins           1 hour 4 minutes


Friday, August 19, 2016

Clocked by Radar; Ran a Red Light

Today's Scurrilous Tracking

I woke up about 18 minutos after 5 AM this morning, and while almost too late, I got up after a few seconds (Segundos) and was rolling by about 6:00, giving me time for a short ride.  My elevated A1C readings from the recent doc's visit motivate my to get UP and OUT and do SOMETHING....
I went through the nearby recently discovered neighborhood again and again noticed the mechanical speed trap / indicator, and again as I smoked by, it actually read my speed:

And, only another mile or so approaching the Osuna intersection, I was pleasantly surprised to find a green light staring me in the face:
And, as you may note, the light WAS green when I entered the intersection but quickly turned RED before I even got halfway through it.  Must be designed for cars, not bike speeds....
Then, as I rode east on Osuna, I caught the inevitable red light at the Chappel/Cement Truck Intersection.
As I exited Osuna and entered the bike path, I immediately encountered another rudeness from Albuquerque road construction crews:

I made a mild attempt to knock the offending sign over, but it was too stout for me to budge.
Which is probably just as well, it would most likely have blocked the path even worse had I succeeded in knocking it over.
Ride Started: 5:51 AM    Ride Ended:  6:38 AM
Beginning Battery Voltage:   13.3   Ending Voltage: 13.2  Lowest:  12.9
Lowest Temp  64 F      Highest Temp:  67 F 
Stats from the GPS:    Total Miles:  4.49
Overall average speed            Moving Avg               Max Speed
   5.6 MPH                             6.6 MPH                   18.0 MPH
Total Trip time                       Moving Time             Stopped Time
48 minutes                             40 minutes                 7 minutes

Biking to the Diabetic Doctor's Office

Today's Mid-Day Track

This ride was so short it's hard to justify riding about it.
I had a doctor's appointment at 10:30 AM and, since it's slightly less than a mile up the road, I rode the bike over there.  Only takes a minute or so longer to arrive and there's always an available parking spot for the trike, under the shade tree in the gravel front yard of the endocrinologist's office.
I got chewed up one side and down the other by the Physician's Assistant, who is a little Chinese lady who brooks no back-talk, much harder to get along with than her doctor who I normally see.
You may think that with "all" my bike and trike riding and walking the Doc would be praising me for the wonderful blood test results.
You (and I) would be sadly mistaken.  My A1C, a blood test that reveals my average blood sugars for the last 3 months, was 8.9, down a couple tenths from last visits 9.1, but not enough to satisfy Miss Genghis Khan.  All my other blood tests were in the wonderful range but she wants me  to straighten up, fly right, and do better.... OR ELSE.  Or Else What?  I feared to ask.
She's rattling off this list of this and that, and in my tiny brain I'm thinking..... MORE BICYCLING.
We'll see.
When I left the office and saddled up the tandem Terratrike I had ridden over there alone, a nice looking blondie walked over from her car, admiring the trike, and told me "You could pick someone UP with this!!"
I just smiled and rode away.... I like being happily married.
This area is strewn with orange barrels, road blocks, and trucks growling this way and that, but so far I've  been quite lucky in getting huge gaps in traffic with which to get going safely and get into the right lane, etc, etc.  So this trip was uneventful and short, but still fun.


Ride Started: 10:05 AM    Ride Ended:  11:37 AM
Beginning Battery Voltage:   13.1   Ending Voltage: 13.0  Lowest:  12.9
Lowest Temp  71 F      Highest Temp:  82 F 
Stats from the GPS:    Total Miles:  1.96
Overall average speed            Moving Avg               Max Speed
   6.8 MPH                             8.3 MPH                   16.0 MPH
Total Trip time                       Moving Time             Stopped Time
1hour 30+ minutes                17 minutes                 1 hour 13  minutes

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Wednesday Wanderings

Today's Thrilling Tracks

Two nights ago, on Monday night, I was a bit surprised to notice a SKUNK just ahead of me and the walking-dogs, at about 10 PM.  The skunk, which I thought first might be a squirrel, was actually sidling along the walkway in front of me and the doggies and was seemingly wanting to avoid any conflict with us.  He MAY have been somebody's domesticated pet, since he didn't make a stance or a stink.  But I've seen coyotes out along the bike path and of course rabbits proliferate everywhere, especially commercial areas with grass lots.
I awoke this morning to "go down the hall", expecting to crawl right back in bed afterwards, but when I noticed the clock on the microwave said "5:00 AM", I realized it was a perfect time to go for a ride instead.
For this morning's joyride I selected to ride again up to Balloon Fiesta Park and back.
It was just a bit on the side of too cool this morning for most of the ride.  I was wearing only my front-velcro da-glow yellow tee shirt and it would have been nice to have a windbreaker for the most of the trip.
But, it was only coldest when zipping downhill, and most of the ride is fairly level.  So complaints are minimal.
I again seemed to encounter more fellow cyclists than usual, including a few going the same way as I (passing me with minimal effort).
As I passed the Balloon Festival Museum I noticed something new:  A huge lighted display in the viewing window on the north side of the building.  Quite spectacular but the fence kept me so far away it didn't show up well in the GoPro video.
My left hand brake caliper seems to have almost totally lost its stopping/gripping power.  I need to put new pads in it before I get in trouble.  The right hand brake still works well but there ARE times both grippers come in handy...

Ride Started: 5:31 AM    Ride Ended:  7:07 AM
Beginning Battery Voltage:   13.1   Ending Voltage: 13.0  Lowest:  12.8
Lowest Temp  60 F      Highest Temp:  64 F 
Stats from the GPS:    Total Miles:  8.88
Overall average speed            Moving Avg               Max Speed
   6.7 MPH                             7.1 MPH                   17.7 MPH
Total Trip time                       Moving Time             Stopped Time
1 hour 19 mins                      1 hour 15 mins              4  minutes

Monday, August 15, 2016

Monday Sundown Patrol - Foursome Version

This Evening's Tracker Results

Tonight we decided to ride together again to burn a few carbs and additionally strengthen Jacque's newfangled store-bought knee.
We turned out of our street on to Jefferson, as usual, but Lilly was crying her full-bladder cry and Jacque spotted nice grass just across the street from us:  Holman's parking lot.  This turned out to be a VERY nice roomy area to ride around, with almost no traffic after closing time.  We rode around to the back parking lot, still roomy and spacious, and let the girls actually run LOOSE on the huge grass lot in back of Holmans before taking off again.  Exploring a bit  further, we found a sidewalk EXIT ramp up onto the biker path, obviating the need to "swing wide" crossing 3 lanes of Jefferson to squeeze through the narrow bollards blocking entry to the bike trail from Jefferson.
My ham radio 3-band transceiver still will not transmit with the bike's motorcycle-style harness.  As best I can tell, the transmit button's harness has somehow opened up, but the new harness I had for a spare does not cure the problem.  I think I can bypass it and make it work with other wiring, but we'll soon see about that.  Meanwhile while time is short, riding is more important than radioing.
We then went riding down southward on the North Diversion Channel Trail, only making maybe a mile before we turned around at the Singer crossing.  It appears some kind of big project is underway on that bike intersection, with lots of steel and concrete in evidence.  It almost looks like they're going to build a ramp for cyclists to go OVER and above motorists below instead of having to wait on them on the same level so much of the time.

Ride Started: 6:46 PM    Ride Ended:  7:40 PM
Beginning Battery Voltage:   13.2   Ending Voltage: 13.0  Lowest:  13.0
Lowest Temp  78 F      Highest Temp:  84 F 
Stats from the GPS:    Total Miles:  3.46
Overall average speed            Moving Avg               Max Speed
   4.1 MPH                             5.5 MPH                   14.9 MPH
Total Trip time                       Moving Time             Stopped Time
50 minutes                            37  minutes                     12  minutes

Monday Dawn Patrol

This Morning's Tricky Tracking
I awoke around 4:25 AM this morning, and sleepily went back to sleep, desiring that last 30 minutes of shut-eye.  When I next cracked the peepers to see what time it was, I had overslept to 5:14 and I got up and rode anyway.
It was definitely cooler this morning, almost cold in the low 60's, but it still beats the stick-a-fork-in-me heat later on in the day.
I decided to replicate the loop route I "found" a few days ago, going north on the North Diversion Trail to Paseo del Norte, then west on the trail paralleling Paseo for about 1/4 mile until turning back south on Las Lomitas, following it to Vista del Norte and continuing on back towards Osuna, which then takes only a half a mile or so until I get to the Chappel/North Diversion Trail danger-section.  This is an intersection heavily used by commuters, large vehicles including CONCRETE TRUCKS, where it is NOT laned or marked for cyclists but where they must go to get off Osuna onto the bike trail.  There is a small sign stating "Share the Road, Watch for Cyclists", but that is of small comfort sitting next to a rumbling Semi at the intersection and hoping he can see you and is in the mood to be careful.  Fortunately, most truck drivers using this intersection are more polite and forbearing than the average motorist late for work.


Ride Started: 5:37 AM    Ride Ended:  6:38 AM
Beginning Battery Voltage:   13.2   Ending Voltage: 13.0  Lowest:  12.9
Lowest Temp  60 F      Highest Temp:  64 F 
Stats from the GPS:    Total Miles:  2.86
Overall average speed            Moving Avg               Max Speed
   6.8 MPH                             8.1 MPH                   21.5 MPH
Total Trip time                       Moving Time             Stopped Time
25 minutes                            21  mins                     2 hours 8  minutes

Saturday, August 13, 2016

So, a Short Ride to the Duke City Hamfest

 Today's Tracking to the Pyramid Hotel
Friday, 12 August, was the opening day for the 2016 Duke City Hamfest.  At first I had not planned on attending until Saturday, but as Friday morning wore on with a distinct lack of emergencies or phone calls of any sort, I decided to saddle up the trike and ride over.  After all, it was only a few blocks, so even though the sun was getting warmer it was not a big undertaking.
On the way over I made the mistake of trying to get off the main road and take a route through the parking lots connected with various walking trails.  Not only did it slow me down, but the paved and graveled trails gave way to dirt, making the rear wheel slip under cranking torque.  A couple places were blocked so tight I had to dismount and "armstrong" the trike around the corners.  Coming back was much easier just riding the streets and watching for  cars; normal behavior.
I didn't even change out of my white shirt and tie.  Not a bad ride and the " bragging rights" are always enjoyable.
Ride Started: 10:49 AM    Ride Ended:  1:05 PM
Beginning Battery Voltage:   13.5   Ending Voltage: 13.2  Lowest:  13.1
Lowest Temp  78 F      Highest Temp:  84 F 
Stats from the GPS:    Total Miles:  2.86
Overall average speed            Moving Avg               Max Speed
   6.8 MPH                             8.1 MPH                   21.5 MPH
Total Trip time                       Moving Time             Stopped Time
25 minutes                            21  mins                     2 hours 8  minutes