Once a source of "Not all you want to know about Texas Adventure Racing," but now just some "leisure" adventure through the eyes of "The K-SPoT"

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Holiday Hullaballoo pt. 2

Ethan 'hamming' it up
It was now back to Houston, and all the related stress it seemed. The first flight to Minneapolis was easy enough, no problems worth mentioning. It was our flight to Dallas that started the headaches. Our flight was delayed several minutes, threatening our connection from Dallas to Houston. We didn't worry much about it until we got to Dallas. We touched down about 30min late and our flight would be leaving in about 10mins. It was running time. I ran ahead to try to keep the door open since the message boards had said the gate for our Houston flight had already closed. Thankfully, other people were scrambling towards the door, so they kept it open for us--we were the last ones on the plane. Whew. Disaster averted. Now, would our checked luggage make it back with us? When we got into Houston, the only luggage that was there on the conveyor was my green bag...1 of 4. Nice. So we went over to make a claim and thankfully they were able to find it while I was making one more check of the conveyor. I just wanted to get home now. We had a bit of trouble getting our car out of the parking lot, but thankfully that too resolved itself. We were finally home. In our own bed. Happy again. Not too happy because we were also returning to the scene of a crime. While we were away, I had decided to take my fish, Unagi, home from work so that the Hyperturtles could feed him when they periodically came by to check on the house. But in a murderous rampage, Nikko had put our poor fishy to sleep. What makes things worse, she tried to make it look like an accident--the CSI report said that the fish was pinned under the glassy rocks, appearing to be an accident. Poor Unagi. Evil Nikko.

Danny and his 'full figured' kittiesEven so, it would still be a fun-filled week because is was the Sugar Bowl on Wednesday! So I went to work Tuesday, all feeling like I was beat repeatedly with a crowbar, then had planned to drive right after work to my friends house in Baton Rouge. Unfortunately, traffic was so bad in Houston that night, I couldn't get around to finish all my errands, so I just decided to stay home that night and drive the next morning. Fortunately, that meant I would get some much-needed rest. So the next morning I got up pretty early to make the drive. It was pretty easy--traffic was cooperating and I made it into Baton Rouge in 4hrs. There I hung out with Bill, Tim and Little Miss Moe while Meredith was picking up other ND faithful from the airport. Shortly afterwards, we went to have lunch at a local restaurant, then it was off to NOLA. Driving was uneventful until we got into the New Orleans area--it was packed! And what's worse, everyone was wearing LSU colors...and I mean EVERYONE! Wow, talk about home field advantage! We slowly creeped down Poydras to get to the hotel W, where they would be staying the night after the game--I was going to drive back. On the way, we were able to see the Irish Marching Band cross the street doing their usual pregame parade. It was so cool, I almost shed a tear.

at least our band was better than theirs!We made it to the hotel, which was a bit swanky...and it cost as much! I had reservations at the Queen and Cresent and it was half as much as their rooms! Anyway, they settled in and then we slowly made our way back towards the Superdome. We stopped at the Marriot where they had some ND paraphanalia and then over to the ND pregame party. It was a lot of fun and it was good to hang around other Irish faithful for a little while...before the beating would commence. After having food and drink, we eventually headed over to the Superdome and that's when I said goodbye since they were sitting in a different section and I was going to head straight back to Houston right afterwards. Well, I will not go into the details of the game since there were no real Notre Dame highlights. The LSU fans around me started off nice enough, but when the game turned into a laugher in the 2nd half, they started getting annoying. And I had so much respect for them at first...they started to remind me of Ohio State fans. Anyway, knowing my long drive ahead, I left with about 5min left in the 4th...it was long over before then. Thanks to some good advice from one of the valets I was able to avoid all the blocked streets and traffic and got out of New Orleans pretty smoothly. The only problem was that I was operating on about 4hrs of sleep and it was now around 11pm at night. It was okay for the first couple of hours, but I started to drift a bit. I stopped at a Loves to get some coffee, but that only helped for another 30mins. After blanking out a couple of times, I knew I had to pull over and take a quick nap. Hello Chevron. I pulled up to the side of the gas station and laid back. Next thing you know, it had been almost an hour. I felt a lot better!

one of the few times our team moved the ballOn the road again, but this time my concern was deteriorating weather conditions. It had been raining off and on during my drive, but as soon as I got into Texas, it started to seriously pour! Even so, I kept driving like I usually do and I was passing people left and right...until I did a little hydroplaning. That freaked me a bit and told me that there was quite a bit of water standing on the road. All the water spray also made it extremely difficult for me to pass trucks without running into the concrete barriers. So I took it a bit slowly from then on, and that was a good decision. About another half hour on, the guy in front of me started hitting his brakes something fierce--good thing I saw this in time. The road was flooded...and so was one unlucky car in the middle of the freeway. We slowly drove around it, making sure I didn't flood Audi's engine. I finally got to the I-45 interchange and it looked like it would be clear sailing from there. Just as I'm approaching the N. Main exit, I hit another pool of water. It was deep enough to where I didn't hydroplane out of control, but shallow enough where I didn't get stuck in it--it just kept me on course, thankfully. With that, I was finally, safely home and it was about 5am. There was no way I was going to work now--I decided to take the morning off and then work from home the rest of the afternoon. I was soooo tired!

Domers drinking their sorrows away (and it seems to be working!)I slowly tried to get back into my routine. I went to HART practice on Thursday and felt WAY out of shape, again. But I did get back into my groove towards the middle of training. Saturday I did a brick from the house to Memorial and back--it was my first TE of 5 in a long time and it felt like it! I actually felt really good on the run, but the bike back was really rough with a stiff headwind. I saw a few people along the way: Andrea, Jill, Andrew, and a couple cars I didn't recognize. Sunday was training with my Big Chill team, Nikki and Warship. It was going well, but I was suffering from back pain that started from the day before, right when I was finishing up the 2nd bike leg of my brick. It seemed that the first run we did aggravated it, but then the 26mi bike did me in. On the final stretch back, as the Warship wasn't going to let up on the gas, I finally called uncle. I had to slow down. So we crawled in at a tepid 14mph pace and then finished up with a very short paddle on the lake. Rick didn't want my back to get any worse, so we just paddled to the creek and back. In all, it was about 3+ hrs of training. I took the day off on Monday to rest my back, but then went to training on Tuesday and was feeling good again. The back pain is just a sure sign I'm out of shape. Good times.

Anyway, I think that's it. Life is slowly returning to normal and we're gearing up for another busy AR season. A lot of potential is abound and I'm pretty hyped about it! Until next time, keep your EPOC high and may your TE not be overreaching.


Anonymous randy said...

nice write up...

did you show Mo the article about the scorpion on the plane from houston ?

5:45 AM

Blogger K-SPoT said...

what's next, snakes on a plane?!? oh wait, that already happened...

8:15 AM


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