Saturday, July 7, 2007

Working Without a Net


So we are off. The date: 7-7-07. At 4 AM we woke up after a brief nap to get shuttled to the airport, making our first flight. 12 hours later, we showed up in the SeaTac airport with crossed fingers hoping that all our gear came through ok. After getting all our bags ok, we waited hesitantly for our bikes, before realizing that they were actually going to come down the baggage ramp (these bikes were essentially naked and ready for any damage that the world would throw at them)! I dove into the steel "landing area" that the ramp dumps into and did my best to "catch" the bikes. Luckily, in the end there were only minor bruises on the bikes and we spent 2 hours putting everything together, checking the gear, adjusting the brakes, etc. After getting a few hours of sleep on the plane, I felt much better and ready to rock.


So we set out on bike to visit with Brad's parents, The Emersons. It was only 20 miles or so of riding, and the weather was great. And the first thing we saw as we came around the corner was Mt. Rainer - huge, snow covered, and beautiful. The picture doesn't even convey the hugeness of it. That was great. It really hit that we are really here, with no real backup options, everything we have on our bikes. We are now operating without a net.
So the report for the day: total mileage: 17 miles, weather great, equipment great, morale great.
If we can keep this up for 8 more weeks we will be in business. And I also happened to have my first clipless-pedal related fall on my bike (as I was stopping to look at a trailside map), but I fell lightly into the grass, so no big deal.

4 comments:

steve said...

I have a permanent scar on my right knee due to forgetting to unclip out of my pedals when stopped at a busy intersection. I think it is a rite of passage.

Ken said...

Best of Luck

Victoria said...

Eric,
Sorry you had a difficult last day of work. You know you were upfront and honest about the bike trip. The work culture there could not conceive of such an idea and ultimately it will be their loss. You can look at yourself in the mirror and know that you did a good job and were a conscientious employee.
I'm glad that you, Jason and the bikes arrived in Seattle to some wonderful weather.
Have a safe journey. I'll be thinking of both of you and look forward to seeing you in August to hear about the trip to date.
This is a journey of a lifetime. I'm sure when you look back on this trip you will have fond memories of the experience. Now is the time for this opportunity. Sometimes in life you have to grab opportunities when they present themselves because often there is no second chance. Work will always be there.
Take care. I'm proud of you and excited for you.
Love, Victoria

Mendon said...

Woot for cross country iron-man contests (especially when you're only competing against yourself). This is a fabulous idea and I'm glad to see you able to carry it out. As for travelling, if you need a place to stay in chicago when/if you come through, we've got an extra bedroom, home cooked meals, and a hot shower.