Wednesday, November 25, 2015

One More

A few days into my “quit shitty job and getaway” adventure, I was pretty damn satisfied.  I rode some fun trails, hung out with friends and family, and reminisced in my hometown.  I wasn’t done though.  Since I brought a bike, I wanted to ride some more. And no trip to Florida would be complete without a trip to one of the first trails I’ve ever ridden…

I got to the trail pretty early, ready to enjoy a leisurely ride.  The last time I was at Santos, I did a 12 hour race on a rigid singlespeed.  That was a different kind of fun I guess.  Anyway, looking forward to not having to push myself for 12 hours I took off…

And immediately experienced some of the most horrific knee pain ever.

Not even in the trail yet and I was hurting.  Instead of canceling my ride to nurse my swollen knee, I opted to play around on the skills course for a bit to see if things would “loosen up.”  It didn’t help one bit, but my stubborn ass decided to ride anyway.  The trail starts out pretty flat so I figured I’d be fine.

The pain was subdued as long as I didn’t stand up to pedal, so the first few miles weren’t so bad. I still stopped a lot just in case.

I couldn’t resist playing around though, even if it did hurt when I stood up.

That was fun, but this one was fun-er…

I somehow made it all the way to the Vortex (as seen in the photo above.)  My knee seemed to be getting worse, but seeing the Florida “mountains” made me forget about it a little.

But I still wanted to crawl in a hole and die.

The Vortex section is tough.  It’s where you find quite a bit of climbing, and with my knee getting much worse I ended up walking a lot.  I sat down for a while, wondering if I would even be able to make it back to the trail head.  I considered asking someone out there for a ride back, but I can't go for that.  Eventually I fought through the pain (making matters worse no doubt) and rolled slowly through the woods to reach my truck.  I sat for a while with my leg elevated and wondered why I had been a complete dumbass.  My knee was the size of a softball at this point and I could barely bend it.


Somehow I managed to pack up my stuff and went on a quest for some liquid “medicine.”  Luckily I only had to travel across the street…

They sell beer, and of course you can drink it right there in the shop. 

I felt better, but my knee hurt (alcohol is rad but not that rad.)  I piled into my truck and drove away, wondering if I would be able to walk the next time I stopped.  I took frequent breaks from driving to stretch my leg, and it helped just a little bit.  Luckily when I stopped in Jacksonville to get beer I had a cart to hold on to.

The mystery injury was a few weeks ago.  I still haz pain.  I’ve been on one road ride since then and it seems to be a little better.  I have a long way to go I guess.  Who knows.  I didn’t do anything to hurt it, but at least the diagnosis isn’t too bad (bursitis.)  I may have a bum knee for a while, but damn if that trip didn’t do me wonders.

I’ve since started a new job (pretty damn awesome), and I have a new outlook on things these days.  This is the first time in a long time that I’ve consistently been in a good mood.

Who gives a shit.

I do, I guess.  For now.

See y’all next week.  I have a four day weekend because natives saved some white people from starving to death many moons ago.  

Don’t eat too much tomorrow, tubby.

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