Linking up with Amber and Neely for It's Ok Thursday!
This is going to be a little different (and long) spin on It's Ok Thursday because I am going to tell you a story about how many dumb decisions I made on Wednesday Night and how it was all okay, eventually.
It was a lovely 106 degrees in North Texas when I headed out to Northshore Trail to go ride my bike. Now, up until last night I have ridden my bike on paved paths and roads so I was a little unprepared for stuff like this:
I should say that when I set out on the trail I realized in theory it was 19 miles. I realized that in THEORY. I didn't comprehend what that meant in reality. It is really close to my house and supposed to be the best trail around so I was excited to actually try something new! I arrived around 6:30 PM and parked at Rock Ledge park which closes at 8:30. It never occured to me I would be out there more than an hour. Did I mention it was 106 degrees? I grabbed a big bottle of water, my phone, my car key and my helmet & pedaled off.
It is beautiful out there and you see all kinds of awesome stuff on the trails from geckos to bunnies. I was totally unprepared for some of the rough terrain and without sharing too much, so was about every part of my body but it was fun and when I started to let myself go, it was pretty amazing. (Some of the crazy-steep hills I walked. I'm a little chicken and that is okay.)
Around 7:15 I realized I had no clue where I was and I had no idea how to get back to my Jeep. You can't just turn around on trails. They are kind of one way roads. Luckily for me there were a lot of really nice and helpful men out on the trails so I started asking them how to get back to the place I had parked. They steered me in the general direction and I headed off. However, things turned from a little concerning to down right bad.
First I lost the lid to my water bottle and thus, my water. Did I mention it was 106 and by this point I had been out on the trail about an hour and a half? Did I mention I had 30 minutes before the park closed and my jeep would be locked in? Did I mention I was lost?
Then I crashed.
I road straight into weeds, bushes, a bristle patch, twigs, rocks, I have to idea what all. When I pulled my bike out, I had thrown my chain. Now I have no idea where I am and I am cut and bruised , covered in mud and a little scared and I don't know how to fix a chain. I am trying hard to not panic and not cry. Oh, and I am starting to get light headed and dizzy. I didn't eat before I went out because, remember I was only going to be gone an hour. Then I started seeing spots & getting chills. I know enough to know, this isn't good.
So I found a clearing. Luckily there are a lot of old roads this trail cuts across. I tried to call for help on my phone but I was having a really hard time at this point just typing. (My left hand is still weak this morning. I must have done something when I fell?) So, I just gave up and laid down. I just needed to rest and try to think.
About that time, God sent me two angels. (No, not the California kind). Chuck & Mick. They stopped, gave me water, fixed my bike and because they know the trail pretty well, they road me all they way back to where I could easily get back to the park where my Jeep was parked. They even gave me trail biking pointers along the way. My seat is too low and this makes it harder to handle that rocky terrain. Also, if I hadn't crashed today I wouldn't have been doing it right. They tend to rescue a lot of people on the trail and luckily, I wasn't one of the ones that needed an ambulance! Um, yes, I am glad too!!! Mick told me I was smart to ask for help, most people don't. In other words Mick and Chuck you are awesome and went above and beyond and I thank you!!! You are more than OKAY!!!!
I wish that was the end of the story but by the time I pulled into the park the gate was locked and my jeep was behind it. It was after 9PM and I was sure I was dehydrated and about to have to pedal 5 miles home.
Just then I saw a light and movement at the guard house. I yelled out that I had crashed and gotten lost and could I please get my car. To my amazement not only did he say yes but he was more concerned with if I was okay and was I seriously hurt? I told him I would be okay. He said he would open the up for me. I got my jeep and drove to the gate and rolled my window down to thank him and before I could he handed me the most amazing orange Gaterade and told me to be safe! I thanked him and blessed him.
Now, I know I am really lucky and I know better. I trained for a half marathon in Texas heat. I KNOW better. I just wasn't thinking. I learned. I paid the price too. I'm physically exhausted and I am covered in scratches on my legs, ankles, and arms. That's okay too.
Think anyone would believe I was wrestling a mountain lion?
It is all okay because I had angels looking out for me and the Rangers came through big time too. All of that is better than awesome!
Feel free to laugh at me for being a silly woman.It's okay! I know I am a lucky one too. I will go back again because it is too much fun but I may start smaller next time. There is another trail on the other side of the Lake that isn't as big. I can build up to crazy long winding trails that go no where fast. I'm also going to take more precautions and more water and I'm going to raise my seat first like Mick suggested. Mick also told me that when this was over, I would be proud of surviving and what a story I would have. He was right. He is a pretty smart guy! (And to my bike friend who posted on my facebook that this wasn't smart, no it wasn't but it sure was fun!)