Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Lu Lu the wonder dog


We just got thru burying Lu Lu this afternoon. She was 13 years old and I think her body just gave out on her. She had been laying around for the last week or two and not much interested in going outside or food.

She lived a good life. When she first became a member of the family she was a tiny, mangy ugly puppy. We nursed to back to health and cured her mange. I really think she led a charmed life. She turned into the least aggressive dog I've ever seen. All the kids came over and we had a good cry but I know she doesn't hurt anymore.

Monday, June 15, 2009


R I F...Reading is fundamental? No, R I F in this case means "reduction in force". Last Thursday I got notice that I was being laid off. I can't say that was completely unexpected but I wasn't looking for it now.

For those that don't know, I am a salesman. I sold building supplies to the manufactured housing industry, primarily to Clayton Homes. Since Clayton is the 800 lb. gorilla of the MH industry I thought I might be safe. The big problem is that when I started in the MH industry 10 years ago, there were 430,000 houses built. This year predictions are for around 50,000 houses. No matter how much you increase what you are selling it's hard to make up that volumn.

Maybe I have learned my lesson as far as MH is concerned. This is the 4th layoff in 10 years. Fortunately my customers have been very active in finding me work in the MH industry every time I've been looking.

After getting word Thursday, I set up an interview Friday morning. I think it went well. They don't intend to fill the position until after the 4th of July. When I got home I got another lead on a job out of Tazewell, TN.

At this point I intend to work on fitness and get lots of riding in. There are many big rides I want to do. A big loop at Big South Fork, road ride on the Blue Ridge Parkway, explore Pisgah, Tanasi and Chilhowee and Cherokee national Forest are some places I want to know more about and explore.

On a different note, I raced at Defeated Creek Sunday. If you have never been, it is a great track. A loop is about 9.25 miles. You gradually climb a big ridge and then have a big time fun 2 mile downhill to the finish. I won but by only 6 seconds. A close race makes it much more fun. The guy who finished 2nd is the same guy I've been beating by 5 or 10 minutes on other races. He said he had lost some weight and has been training pretty hard. Nobody drug checked him though. Anyway, I was happy for him and happy to have someone else to push me.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

061009 misc

Sunday Ginger and I drove the Blue Ridge Parkway from Cherokee to Pisgah Mtn. It was the first time I have driven that section in a long time. I really want to do a bike ride on it now!

More Dirty South...Last night we did our regular Dirty South. There were around 20 or so people riding. About 1/2 way around Hastie we split into two groups. I didn't realize it but both groups had the same idea. We did a GA Marble tour including the hole in the wall.

Here we are behind the wall.

Here is Jon checking out the 80 vertical drop from the top of the wall.

I've been to Big South Fork twice in the last couple of weeks. Saturday 4 of us went up and helped the park service and Joe Cross haul lumber into the trail to build a new bridge with. Rob, Kyle, Carelton and I worked about 5 hours until we were too sore to do it any more. So then we went riding.

Friday night we rode grand Gap and Sat evening we rode Collier Ridge and W Bandy.
This is a sign from Collier Ridge Advanced Trail. It will be part of the XC race course July 12.


Grand Master Clydesdale

Riding my bike makes me feel like I'm 10 years old again. I'm 54 years old and a clydesdale. I'm happily married to Ginger and I've got a son and two daughters, Zach, Hannah and Molly.