A few new things are going on here. It’s starting to warm up a bit in Brevard, and that means I’m transitioning from running to cycling. I’ve really enjoyed running, but at the same time I’m getting a little bored with it, and I’m excited to have the chance to get on my bike outside and not freeze.

My first ride of the season was a 20 mile ride on back roads around Brevard. Except for one incident, I really enjoyed the ride and really noticed the strength that my legs had from past months of running. Looping around a small valley out towards Crab Creek Road, I came up on a section of road that takes an almost 90 degree turn.

the turnAs I was nearing the turn I saw a car coming the opposite way. It wasn’t moving exceptionally fast, but I kept an eye on it just in case. Coming toward the corner (I was on the green arrow side in the image), I moved out towards the yellow lines, and then started turning out towards the white line (in my lane) so I would hit the apex of the corner and would be able to keep my speed. As I was at the edge of the white line, I see that the driver of the car decided he would shave off .15 seconds from his drive and cut into my lane. As he was coming over, I noticed he didn’t see me at all. I hit the brakes and my bike was almost completely sideways, my tires skidding and leaving black marks on the asphalt. At the very last moment, for some reason the driver decided to look up, possibly he heard me yelling “WHAT THE FUCK ASSHOLE?!” at the top of my lungs, or saw me skidding towards a head on collision with his Honda, and jerked the car out of my way.

I’ve said this before: I think I handle situations like this very well. Some people freeze up and react by doing nothing, some people panic and cause more damage, but when I’ve been in situations that are like this, I have control over myself and generally act to fix the situation as fast as my brain can function. I also tend to react with some anger.

It was odd to see the car coming straight at me. For those few seconds I was calculating how to get out of the situation, where to turn, how much to pull on the brakes, what would happen if the car hit me, how I should possibly turn my body to roll over the car’s roof, because that’s what I had decided would happen if I didn’t go through the windshield. It was interesting, afterward, to go over what I had thought about in such a short time.

Luckily, I was fine, and there was no collision. The car did slow down and almost stop right after, and I saw that it was a newer gold/champagne Honda with a Brevard College Faculty parking sticker on the back window. After a second of staring at it, I decided I would go tell them to watch the hell out next time, and then they split. The car sped off, and I tried to chase it, but even with the adrenaline and my strong legs, there was no way I was catching it. Oh well.

My second ride of the season was last Thursday. I rode 276 up to the Blue Ridge Parkway. It was an hour and 20 minutes of almost constant climbing. Riding 276 sure does hurt sometimes, but it’s amazing fun and I always get a huge sense of accomplishment when I finish. My third ride was yesterday. I went on a 30 mile ride out towards Hendersonville, through DuPont Forrest and then down 276 into town. There is a good bit of climbing on that ride as well. It’s fun to get back out on the bike, and I’m hoping I’ll be in a lot better shape for the Assault on the Carolinas this year.

In other news, Scott and I installed the range hood over the stove. I had to run new wiring to the hood. It looks nice. Now it’s time to finish mudding and sanding the office so we can move stuff in there and have less clutter in the rest of the house.

Scott and I have had a visitor since Saturday. He’s an orphan dog that I found in our neighbor’s yard. He has a shock collar on, but no tags. I put a notice up on Craigslist, a classified ad in the Transylvania Times, and called Animal Control. So far there haven’t been any emails from Craigslist, the newspaper said the ad wouldn’t get put in until Thursday, and the Animal Control people start their week on Wednesday apparently, so he’s just been hanging out at the house with us. I hope that his owners come get him soon, because he’s a really sweet dog and I’m sure they’re missing him.

I’ll post a picture of him tonight. For now I’m running around trying to figure out what happened to the server at work.

Oh, also, I finished the design for my portfolio site.