Stan’s Obligatory Blog

Happy Thanksgiving

9/11/2013

And I was suddenly overcome…

Filed under: — stan @ 9:12 pm

We’re coming down to the last set of practice climbs before the race at the end of the month. So tonight’s plan was the same as Monday’s. To see how fast I could climb the first time up, and then to do three more, just because.

It was a bit of an ordeal getting downtown this evening. I went to the Allen Metro station in time to get the 4:57 train to downtown. When I got to the platform, there was an outbound train sitting there. After a minute or so, I realized that the outbound train wasn’t moving. And in fact, it had both of its pantographs down, I went and asked the motorman, and he said that the power had failed from Allen to the end of the line at Sierra Madre Villa, and that trains were only running from downtown to Lake Avenue in Pasadena. Now, it seems that Metro could have put up a notice about that on the video monitor above the fare machines at the entrance to the station. But then again, they don’t seem to be known for doing things that seem blindingly obvious to the rest of us. So I went back down, got my bike, and rode over to the Lake station, and got on to go downtown. I made a leap of faith and assumed that they would fix the power by the time I came home, so I brought my bike along, since I didn’t want to have to get off at Lake to get it on the way back.

When I got to the building, I locked my bike up to the railing along the street above where we enter the stairs. Then the building guards came out and said I couldn’t put it there.

Oh. All. Right.

Well, at least they were nice about it. They let me in to the parking level of the building, and I locked my bike up on the rack they had down there.

After all that, it was almost 6:15 by the time I got into the stairwell. I started up, aiming to do 6 floors per minute, but that only lasted a short time. There was a lot of traffic on the stairs, and it was hard to pass people, so I lost some time there. But the worst was about the 35th floor, when I was suddenly overcome by a crushing wave of “Oh MY GOD! What the HELL am I trying to prove here?!?!?” That just took all the wind out of my proverbial sails, and I had to really push to not just stop right there. But I managed to keep going, and came out on 51 at 9:08. So I guess my crushing wave of self-doubt cost me about 20 seconds. Useful to know, I guess.

Oddly enough, just going 20 seconds slower on the first climb translated into being a whole lot perkier on the second. I managed to get up in 11:28, which is quite a bit faster than my second climb on Monday. And the third and fourth times up I was able to maintain a modest pace, which isn’t too bad for being tired.

After all that, I went and collected my bike from under the building, and I headed home. I asked, and the Metro people said that the power was fixed, so I was able to ride the train back to Allen and ride home from there, just like on a normal day. So I guess it wasn’t that bad.

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