Saturday, February 9, 2008

Riding in the desert, sans seat

I'm thinking of being back home today and how I long for a day of riding my bike in the hills. 

And I laugh at myself as I think of a the time I tried to ride my mountain bike with the motor cross peeps back home...

It is the story of a mammal. A mammal named Dani and her need to be free...

It was April 2003. Longing for a bike ride I skipped out of work early to get a dose of sun and speed.

I ride my bike about 3 miles from my house to the dirt hills where the motor cross people ride. I needed to feel the up-and-down, boing, boing, boing, sensation that only my bike can give. 

I was really enjoying myself on my bright green and yellow pedal powered machine when I raise up off the seat to take a bump and jump the bike. On the way down I keep lowering myself and when my ass touched the frame of the bike, I knew something was wrong. 

I pulled my body back up. Stopped the bike. Turned around and realized the seat was gone. 
G - O - N - E -! 

So there I am among a bunch of men on motorcycles in the desert on a bike with no seat. And to boot, the men are laughing at me and I have no tools. I need help, but don't want to wheel up to the laughing ones and ask for a hand.

I get off the bike, retrieve my seat and began trying to push it down into the frame. It's not working. I  started banging my fist on the seat, with a very forceful, "Damnit, damnit, damnit!" Still, nothing from the seat post, but plenty of laughing from the men on the hill above. 

I refuse to acknowledge them. Instead I gingerly balance my seat post in the hole it should be sitting tightly in and try to balance myself and try to pedal away. But my seat immediately falls back into the dirt. I try the procedure again without prevail. 

I put my seat in my hand and tried to hold my handlebars at the same time as I rode. Then I hit another bump and with my gears set to climb hills, my legs start to give. 

Clip in pedals, low gear, no good!

I clinch my muscles in fear of falling onto my back tire and really giving the men on the hill something to laugh at. Then, I spot a trailer, a disheveled man, two German Shepards and a really beat up truck. Hmmm, this guy lives here, among the motor cross people in the desert with his dogs. 

I don't care. I pull up to him, seat in hand, stop my bicycle and say, "Excuse me. Do you have an alan wrench?"


" wrench. I've lost my seat." I hold the seat up closer for him to see.

After searching the trailer, the man returns with vice grips to back the screw out so the post will fit back in. "Looks like you had the seat too high." 

No shit! "Apparently, yes," I mumble.

After fixing my bike I tell the man how appreciative I am and that he has helped me out because I'm a ways from home. 

"You're not down there?" he asks, pointing to the many trucks with trailers that haul the dirt bikes for the men who are riding in the hills.

"Oh, no, I'm a few miles from here. Thanks so much." 

I hop on my bike and began riding home very fast because: 
#1 It's kinda creepy out here at the trailer with the man who helped me.
#2 The men on the hill are still laughing
#3 I'm embarassed

This is the story of  a mammal named Dani and her need to learn that the bike tools go with her EVERYWHERE, EVERYTIME! 

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