The happenings, 1 Year Later
Nothing to say, really.
I realize it’s been almost two full months since I’ve posted something on my blog, but I’ve really had nothing to say of any interest.
There have been some events in the past few weeks that have changed things in my life, most notably the breakup with my girlfriend. It’s got me feeling down, but I don’t really want to get into it otherwise I’ll come off as being yet another teenage brat on MySpace that can’t do anything more than talk about how depressed they are.
The apartment I live in now is on the foot of Mt. Tabor, an extint volcano that’s right in Portland. Rent isn’t too much at all, and it’s cozy enough for me that I’m not embarassed to live there unlike the apartment that was part of “Old Utica Base”, MI. I have most of the things I need, but could still use a sofa and kitchen table. Nothing fancy, just the basics. Oh, and a vacuum cleaner.
I’ve been meaning to post some pictures of my place, the surrounding area and of Portland in general, but I’ve discovered that my 3 year-old digital camera has gone the way of the typical consumer electronics device and DIED. It must have gotten wet or dropped too many times. I put batteries in, open the lens cover and nothing happens. No beeps, no moving lenses, nothing. Even Best Buy says it’s now out of their extended warranty coverage. Bullocks. That’s why I don’t normally buy that “Extended” shit. Never get to use it, therefore, 100% profit for Best Buy execs.
My car is running OK…whenever it runs…it’s actually been a full month since I’ve had to fill the gas tank. I guess that happens when I bike, bus or take the MAX to work and grocery shopping. It’s still just under half a tank which should take me to the end of May but since I plan on a couple of Mountain Biking and Hiking trips, $3.29 a gallon: here I come.
Biking: yeah, I’ve been doing a lot of biking…not as much as I had planned due to various reasons, but in the past two weeks, I’ve now put on 300 miles between my two aluminum steads.
My Trek 1000 road bike has seen the most action therefore has had the most parts replaced, most recently has been the tires have been upgrade from cheapo $15 Continental Sport tires to $35 Specialized Armadillo puncture proof armored tires since I’m sick of flats on my way to work. In fact, the only parts on my roadie that haven’t been changed are the brake handles, handlebars, stem and cranks. Soon, I will have to replace the wheels since both hubs are starting to grind with grit and get bent out of shape from curbs, potholes, sewer grates and large rocks…there goes another $200.
The Gary Fisher Tassajara mountain bike is doing much better overall since it doesn’t have a tenth of the miles as the roadie, but it does see it’s fair share of very rough trails and mud. The pedals have been replaced due to excessive mud buildup that screwed the bearings, also there was something about those Shimano pedals that always made it difficult to clip out no matter how I adjusted the spring tension. Crank Bros Eggbeaters are my new spinning partners.
I’ve tried Track racing on a fixed gear bike a few weeks ago. That was fun and exhilerating. Nothing like pedaling at 25mph on a bike that doesn’t have brakes or a freewheel. I also did some volunteer maintenance work on the Alpenrose Velodrome, hanging signs, painting, sweeping, patching the track. Fun times.
Lately, in an effort to meet more people that are into cycling, I’ve been meeting with the Portland United Mountain Pedalers (PUMP). I’ve ridden with them at Forest Park just outside from downtown, Scappoose, Lacamas park and Mt. Tabor. Interesting characters that bunch, although I find it odd that there are 4 others in the group that have moved here from Michigan. Common theme? To get away from the auto industry and be closer to nature. Interesting.
Working for the Port of Portland has been Ok. The job isn’t very stressful at all, it’s in a nice area and has nice benefits. The only part that feels weird is being on-call every 4 weeks or taking a week to man the helpdesk at the airport (PDX).
I’ve some interesting friends out here…people into gaming, cycling, hiking, kinky stuff, movies, climbing, paintball, environmentalists, swinging, dancers, swingers, bisexuals, homosexuals, painting and saving the world. What does this all mean? I have no idea.
Tonight I ride Forest Park with PUMP as a weekly event. Thursday, I can take a class at Alpenrose and learn how to track race or head up to Alberta Park in North Portland (NoPo) and participate in Bike Polo, Friday is the Night ride at Scappoose. Saturday and Sunday have mountain bike races in Southern Oregon.
It’s one hell of a bike scene here for the next three months or so…until the beginning of September, there is some kind of race, ride or bike related event somewhere in Portland in the surrounding area.
I still don’t have all my own hiking/camping gear and I’m thinking of taking a bike-camping trip down to Champogee state park and spending a weekend away from technology and the city.
I’ve been reading up on Ultra-light backpacking…only carrying the bare minimums for survival. How fun would that be to strap 25lbs of gear to my mountain bike, ride a trail for a couple of hours to a remote camp site and spend an evening or two under stars with just a sleeping bag. I just need a GOOD sleeping bag, a mosquito netting and some other small essentials and I’m ready for a weekend of nature absorbtion.
Looks like I might be able to attempt a summit of Mt. St. Helens this year…rumor has it that the park management may open her up to hikers this summer…we’ll see.
I haven’t been rock climbing as much as I thought I would…but only because I’ve been so busy with so many other activities and a slight lack of motivation since I don’t have a climbing partner of roughly the same ability.
Drawing is done here and there, but it’s nothing that I care to share with the world right now.
I’ve been slowly collecting the gear I need to go backpacking/camping. In fact, I think I now have everything I need and will try to go somewhere this holiday weekend.
That’s it for now!