What's the weather like in Doug's neighborhood?

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Dead silent

Okay, not much activity here. Life has been on hold somewhat since the beginning of October. I put Erin and the kids on a plane on the 7th IIRC. At that time work situation was looking pretty grim with layoffs lurking in the near future. On the 15th of October my contract was canceled with TBE.

On the 16th Clay, Gary, Cam, and I headed out on the ride that was just not meant to be. First off as we are driving up 72 a rock kicks up and cracks Gary's windshield. Then upon arrival in Chattanooga everyone piles out and starts getting bikes ready. A couple of minutes later a better parking spot opens up so Gary jumps back in the truck and ends up running over Cam's back wheel. At this point we really should be careful and watch out for what would be next. However we soldiered on, got Cam's wheel rideable, and headed off down the trail.

Just a couple of miles into the ride we enter the "Chunk" section of the trail, an experts only playground with drops, jumps, and good dh speed. Things start off well and I am finding a groove. We stop and eye up one of the big rock drops up top and I decided to hit it. It went off without a hitch, a good 4-5ft drop into a steep dh landing. I was feeling pretty good after nailing that one, so as we headed down the trail I was packing a lot of speed taking the jumps and trying to remember what comes next. I drop into a valley and pick up speed for an upcoming jump out the other side of it. Well long and short of it is that I ran a lot of speed into a near vertical jump and pussed on the takeoff. This resulted in me catching 5-6ft of air. Unfortunately since I didn't pull up hard enough on takeoff the front end did not get as much lift as the rear. This put my landing fully on the front wheel. I death gripped it and tried to ride it out, but in the end the bars twisted and I ended up pile driving my shoulder into the hard dry dirt.

I knew pretty soon that something was not right in my arm/shoulder. Lifting it was excruciating and I could hear/feel stuff moving around that shouldn't have been moving. The guys helped me adjust my backpack into a sling and Gary and I hiked back out to the cars. I was pretty rough and apparently a bit pale. Fortunately we ran into a couple at the lot who offered to guide us down to the hospital in Chattanooga.

From there things went as expected. Lots of waiting. Some excruciating x-ray contortions. Then a few hours later I sent off with an immobilization sling and a prescription for narcotics. We then spent a couple of hours trying to track down a 24hr pharmacy in TN as we had been warned that AL wouldn't fill the out of state prescription. I gotta hand it to Gary. He was really helpful and nice throughout the whole ordeal. Definitely a good test of friendship.

On the 5th of November I went in for some hardware. I was put under and the doctor made fast work of it. When I woke my throat hurt and my arm was completely numb from the nerve block. It came to life in the middle of the night and the pain really picked up. At least the clicking and thumping of the bones had stopped. I was left looking a bit Frankenstiened.

and still bruised...

The bruising on this side is mostly due to the original crash 3 weeks earlier.

I managed to tough it out by myself up to this point. Lots of pain meds and some help from friends here and there. But by in large I spent most of my time medicated and zombie'd out. Sleep was not very good/comfortable, I was not coherent enough to surf the web much, so I watched a lot of movies.

On the 12th I headed out to CA to meet Erin and the kids. It was my first time back in CA since moving out in 2007. Lots of family visiting over the next couple of weeks. We were able to stay for Thanks Giving, which was nice. After 3 meals I was officially turkey'd out...

I was able to spend quite a bit of time with my Dad, which was one of the main reasons for making it out to CA. Our best conversations seemed to be gun-centric. Guns are something I am starting to get into shooting at the range and hopefully I will be able to do some hunting here in AL as well. We spent a lot of time going over my Granddad's and his collections. I was even able to do a bit of shopping. I brought a few home with me. I gotta say I was a bit concerned about flying with firearms, but overall it was uneventful.

Here is a good video on the topic:

Here is the rifle case:

The shotgun is an 80's vintage autoloader that looks to have never actually been fired. The rifle was Grandpa Brummett's and it originally left the factory in 1952. I am pretty excited to have some family firearms around to use/enjoy. Since getting them home I have been trying to get them cleaned, lubed, and tested out at the range.

Of course Christmas was thrown in there somewhere...

We were spoiled by the family. Lots of presents under the tree. It took a bit longer than I expected to make it through all of them. Mom and Dad gave us a family gift of a game console. Amazingly it didn't get turned on until around 2pm. After that Austin got a bit sucked in.

Erin and I managed to pull off a somewhat more traditional meal this year. We invited the Lawson's over to share the evening and the dinner.

Okay, mix in some vegging out, a trip to Ikea, a lame New Years Eve and you are now up to date with my life for the most part.