Friday, December 30, 2011

Defying Expectations

I sit in an airport in St. Louis (I'm not so sure of it's name- perhaps the St. Louis Airport or something like that). I just spent a week in the state of Michigan. We stayed at the house of my mom's parents- my grandparents- and drove some 1,000 miles in their Ford Focus.
I'll admit that going into the trip, I lacked high expectations. It had been 2 years since I had been to Michigan, so I expected to feel very unfamiliar. Unlike the last time I visited, Arizona, not Michigan, was now my true home.
The vacation started- as most do- with a plane flight. Mostly due to past experiences, I don't enjoy flying. Being in the plane is alright, but the airport process is a painful one. I had the most exciting experience flying back to Phoenix from the Val'd'Or airport in Quebec. It's really quite intriguing to recount, involving a practical joke from my teammates and a thirty minute detainment in customs. I digress.
The flight to Detroit was good if you want to know. I sat next to a 92 year old woman who got off in Chicago, and I heard her life story.
Upon arriving in Detroit, I felt elation. Here was a place where everyone loved the hometown sports team. I felt the compulsion to yell "Go Wings!" or "Go Lions!" when I passed people wearing the corresponding jerseys. That's what I like about Michigan: patriotism.
My family made our stay in Livonia with our grandparents, but a lot of our time was spent in Mt. Clemens. Grandpa Anderson ended up in the hospital the day before we came. He was alright (dogged by Parkinson's), but he wasn't coming home any time soon. We all had expectations of celebrating Christmas with the Anderson extended family on Christmas Eve, as tradition dictates. We would all watch the Lions and eat a lot of food- or so expectations dictated.
As I sat in the hospital room, squished in between 17 of my family members, I thought to heck with tradition. It was some kind of Christmas epiphany. Is Christmas about tradition? Sitting down for a meal? Gift exchanges? Family? I would contend that it isn't about such things, but that's an argument for another time.
Funny enough, we watched the Lions crush San Diego 38-10 and claim a playoff spot. Was it real? Had the nightmare I had seen all my conscious life finally ended? Could it really be? Certainly that was unexpected.
I am wearing a Detroit Lions long sleeve shirt. Go ahead- laugh at me. Laugh at me now. Mock me for my jealous patriotism. There's one thing you have to admit though; I never stopped believing. Sure, I stopped trusting the Lions, but I never gave up hope. And this time, they made me feel happy. Pick your Patriots. Pick your Steelers. Pick the teams that seemed attractive to you, but the truth of the matter is that their success will never feel as good as that of your hometown team.
I'm sorry; I got on a rant.
Ironically, the trip ended with helping Grandpa Anderson back into his home and saying goodbye. Things felt a tiny bit restored.
We spent time with both sets of Grandparents. We saw church friends. We saw school friends. We even saw Zack. We had some good times, even though they weren't what we expected. That was the trip though- unexpected.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Patience

A week into my time off. I have not quite yet started playing mind games with myself. I am not sure if my hip is getting better because I have not been riding and giving it the chance to re-aggravate itself. There are so many exciting things going on. The AZ race calendar is hot off the press, and it is very exciting to see. Team Winded is looking quite fearsome with the addition of a new rider from Canada. I hardly care about my results in these races- I just want to be involved. I just want to get better.

Maybe I am playing mind games with myself. I don't know.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

The Weekend in Images

Though I did not attend the team ride, I went to Airpark Bicycle Center and met up with some of my teammates.


I watched this movie and enjoyed it.



The Lions won.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Out For a Bit

I went to the Doctor for him to check out my hip/groin pain. In my psychosomatic state, I was afraid that I had a hernia. After checking it out, the Doc said he thought my problem was a muscle strain. On the positive side, no hernia means no surgery or any weird stuff like that. The bad part is that healing takes time...off the bike.
Perhaps this will teach me patience.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Pain

For the past month, I have been riding, but I think it will still be a while until I get back into shape. Through playing a little bit of soccer, I picked up a sore hip flexor (actually I didn't acquire a new hip flexor; rather my hip flexor became sore). Anyway, it hasn't gotten any better. Let's pray that it goes away soon.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Zero Cigars

I totally missed the playoffs in both of my Fantasy Football Leagues.