Thursday, August 18, 2011
So we have to be creative around here when it comes to exercising. We have a sort of rotation going that seems to be working pretty well; most mornings both the Mr. and I get some sort of workout in. Saturdays are tough, though. It's nice to sleep in at least a little bit, but then we're cutting into family time, not to mention the heat of the day.
Last Saturday I decided to ride my bike about 10 miles on a paved trail. We were headed down to see some family that direction, so I figured the Mr. and the kiddos would be driving for half of my ride and that seemed like less time away. The plan was to make it there around 9.
Well, after getting breakfast down everyone's throats (Saturday is pancake day, so it takes a little longer) and the rest of the morning routine, pedals that needed to be swapped out, tires that needed to be pumped up, a bike pump that we had to borrow...you get the idea, I didn't even get going until after 9.
Now, I failed to mention that the trail cuts out in the middle to avoid a golf course, requiring a little bit of riding on the street. No problem, the Mr. mapped out a course for me on Google Maps. I wrote the streets I needed to take on my arm, and off I went. It would have been really helpful if I wrote down which way I was suppose to go once I got to those streets. I had to do a little backtracking. No biggie, it only set me back a few minutes.
I turned down a road that was suppose to take me back to the trail, and discovered that it was all gravel. If you've ever ridden a road bike, you know that the two don't mix. The tires are just too thin, and there was definitely some fishtailing going on. When I came to a hill I decided to just walk the bike down. At the end of this decently long road, I looked for the trail. Hmm, it wasn't there. I called the Mr. I walked through what I'm sure was someone's backyard. Still couldn't find it. I knocked on a few doors. No one answered. I informed the Mr. that I was not riding back up the gravel road. I kept searching. Finally I thought I saw the trail, and I bushwhacked my way--carrying my bike-- through weeds that were waist high, some over my head. Eventually I made it to the end of the property and met a five-foot chain-link fence. And then another immediately on the other side of a small canal. Awesome. I called the Mr.
Me: "There is no way I can get to the trail."
The Mr: "K. Where do you want to meet me? At the end of the street?"
Me: "No, I will meet you in the middle of this field that I am stuck in."
Meantime, I managed to find a weak spot and scale the fence, though I did get my bike stuck on it. It actually held it nicely for me while I got over. While in the process, however, I heard a little 'plop!', and looked down to see my inhaler floating towards the Jordan River on the other side of the fence. Nothing I could do. The zipper pouch on the back of my bike was open. Guess what? My phone was gone, too. Good thing the Mr. already knew where I was.
He got there and helped me get the bike over. I got to the bridge that crossed the river. Another fence. Another phone call. He informed me that I shouldn't have to cross the river. More searching. Finally caught sight of the trail. Walked through a marsh; muddy slush up over the tops of my shoes. Made it to the trail. Another fence. Luckily there were some nice men on the other side that I yelled at. They hoisted my bike over and finally, FINALLY I was on the trail again.
Funny story, huh? I thought so. Luckily. It happened to be a good day--one in which I didn't find every reason to blame the Mr. for my predicament even though it wasn't his fault. A day that I found each new turn of events comical rather than infuriating, and one with a good outcome. By now you're probably wondering why I wrote about this experience on a Thankful Thursday. Well, it's because for everything that went wrong about my bike ride, there were so many blessings. It was just another testament to me that I'm not out in the world alone, trying to figure life out all by myself. I always have help.
And so I am grateful:
For cell phones. I would have had a heck of a time getting out of this mess if I couldn't called the Mr. I'm even grateful that the Mr's phone is so stinking smart (Don't even go there, Babe--I'll never say it again), and he could look up exactly where I was and where I needed to go and how I could get there.
For old shoes. Right before I left I decided to wear some older shoes. Now those shoes are all nastified by the swamp I walked through. And to think, it could have been my beautiful running shoes.
For helping hands. I was so grateful for those men who helped me over the last fence. They were very nice, and very conveniently placed. They just happened to be at the very end of the trail, about to head back. It would have been awhile before someone else came by, if I hadn't been able to get over by myself.
For blessings from heaven. Okay, so technically all of these are blessings, but one instance I know was a tender mercy. After I made it over the first fence, I looked for my inhaler. There really wasn't anywhere it could have gotten stuck. Except for where it did. Some leaves were growing over the canal, and right before I gave up looking, I found it floating, tucked behind one of the leaves. Miracle. Another thing I failed to mention: my phone hadn't been in the pouch, either. I had tucked it down my shorts after talking to the Mr. I know these seem like really small things, but to me they're not. To replace both the phone and the inhaler would have cost us a couple hundred bucks. And to me that's a big deal.
For everything else. My bike didn't break. It wasn't earth-scorchingly hot. I didn't run out of water. I didn't get hurt. Our family that we were visiting didn't mind that we were...oh...two hours late. Adam slept in the car and wasn't screaming bloody murder to be fed (just to clear things up--I'm not a neglectful mother; I had prepared a bottle for him, but it was cold and I doubt he would have drank it).
To be honest, even if all of these things hadn't gone the way they did, I still would know I wasn't alone. But I am grateful that even though we all would have survived, I have a Heavenly Father who cares about me, who helps me, and who wants me to know that He is there. Pretty neat if you ask me.