Friday, June 18, 2010

06/11/10 - Roofing, Riding, Radiation 5.9

Posted 6/19. I'll start earlier in the day on this post. Recently (6/7,6/8), we had our roof replaced by Arry's Roofing, who did a very nice, quality job. On Friday, 6/11, they called around 11:15AM to say what our remaining balance was. We could pay it by check (U.S. mail), or by credit card (a visit to their office). I wanted to pay by credit card, as I get points, which add-up to cash-back. :)

Since Laura had to work until 4:15, their was no other way for me to get there besides my hog (recumbent tricycle). Even though I had significant lower back pain at the time, I was actually looking forward to getting out on my hog.

Luckily, the Pinellas trail is just blocks from our house. It is a paved, former railroad track, part of this country's Rails-to-Trails initiative. Nice, and convenient for us. Long story short, after lunch and other preparations and delays, I did not leave until around 1:00PM. Knowing that it usually takes me at least 45 minutes to get ready for radiation, and we typically leave at 4:55PM to make it to my radiation on time. I knew I was pressed for time...

Fortunately, Arry's is also VERY close to the "trail" as well, but I had never been there, and was relying on directions from an Arry's employee. Big mistake, I should have at least looked at a map or Google Earth before I left. The below GPS track (green) shows my full "journey" on Google Earth. Notice the loop at the top of the path...

My full journey, click to enlarge

Yes, the loop at the top of the path is me searching for Arry's. When I was close I called them multiple times for directions, which I, admittedly, misunderstood multiple times. I'm ashamed to say that I had a GPS clipped to one of my belt loops. I didn't think to use it, because on my trike, I use it mainly to track where I have been, not to navigate. My cellphone also has a GPS, but they charge for navigation. "Lost" with TWO GPSs - ironic and my own stupidity at the time...

My full journey

Since I was in a rush, I didn't stop to take many photos, the following shows the Pinellas Trail as it goes through the town of Tarpon Springs. As you can see, Tarpon Springs has done a nice job of landscaping it.

The trail through Tarpon Springs

Prior to that photo, I stopped at the "Chimp Farm." It's now called "The Suncoast Primate Sanctuary," but I still prefer its old name of the "Chimp Farm." The chimps were making noise, so I had to take a couple of videos. The video below is edited down to 12 seconds from 1+ minutes, mainly to use less memory. Sorry for the shaking, but I had the camera zoomed-in, which only increases the effect. I took this video on the way TO the roofers, and you can here me saying, "I must be moving on," since I was in a rush... Yes, I had to listen to it a few times before I figured out what I was saying! I sub-scripted it in the video.
Chimp Farm Video

I left Arry's around 3:43PM. I knew that I had to scramble, so I pedaled as fast as I could. About 3 miles from home, I was exhausted. It was hard to muster the strength just to put my left foot on its pedal - approximately 6 inches from the ground - pitiful... Why the exhaustion? Many factors, the biggest being over exertion. I continued, nonetheless.

So, when did I get home? I was about 4:44PM. Although Laura was supposed to work until 4:15, she got stuck on the job and got home around 4:45PM. Lucky for me, I had a chance to slip into the house before she got home. Unfortunately, Laura "busted" me as I was nearing the top of the stairs to our house as she pulled her car in. I went in the house and jumped into the shower (OK, I got into the shower as quickly as I could, if I were to jump, I would very likely fall down). I took a very quick and cold shower, it felt good since I was just riding my hog in 90+ degree weather!

I was ready by about 5:05PM (again Laura insists I be ready by 4:55PM). We actually made it to my radiation appointment on time! Radiation treatment 5.9 went well. So, it all worked out in the end. In the days to come my leg muscles were sore, and my back was likely stiffer than usual, but nothing I couldn't handle.

The ride on my hog - it was just over 10.6 miles according to my GPS. Can't wait to do it again when I don't have to "rush!" :)


Anonymous fred said...

This is good stuff Mark, thanks for the chuckles! 10.6 miles from a man battling cancer. I should be ashamed of myself. I couldn't/wouldn't do 10.6 miles on anything not motorized!

6/19/2010 3:24 PM  
Blogger George said...

Nice ride Marcus! 10.6 is awesome (and in 90 degree heat). Can't wait to hear the details of your next journey on the hog. I think of Wild Hogs when I picture you on your hog! Keep up the fight. You are an inspiration. Later. Geo

6/19/2010 9:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great Post, Mark! Always so detailed and most interesting....thanks for taking the time to share with everyone....

Mary & Bill Gregory

6/20/2010 8:49 PM  
Blogger Mark said...


Thanks for your comment! Unfortunately, I'm not driving for now [makes me want to cry], so the "hog" is my only way around...

Laura dropped me off today at Walmart... I walked around pushing a shopping cart - that act stabilized my wobbly walking, helped minimize my lower back pain, and exercised leg muscles that I don't usually use - Who'd of thunk it? Shopping cart therapy!


6/20/2010 10:03 PM  
Blogger Mark said...


Thanks! I almost spent the same amount of time editing that very the 12sec movie (~3 hours), as I did on my bike ride! Forget the time spent on the rest of the post... Me slow...


6/20/2010 10:10 PM  
Blogger Mark said...


Thanks for reading and commenting, they both help give me energy to fight this!


6/20/2010 10:12 PM  

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