Posts Tagged ‘agenda’

Boarding

May 12, 2017

Not that I will be boarding soon, I have about an hour and thirty minutes before my plane starts to board.

But.

I am in the boarding area to London.

Where I will have an hour layover and then.

Yes.

Paris.

I will arrive in Paris tomorrow at 5:15p.m.

About 24 hours from right now.

Of course, Paris is 12 hours ahead and the time traveling is not actually 24 hours.

There is some time travel happening.

In a manner of speaking.

My flight to London is 11 hours 45 minutes.

Yawn.

That’s a long time.

I hopefully will take a very big nap.

I am nervous about my ankle, it’s hard to travel with a sprain, the air pressure in the cabin, having it lower than it should be, I should have it elevated as much as I can, but that’s not going to happen.

I am also sitting in the boarding area early hoping to chat with the flight crew.

I want to see if I can switch seats.

I’m in the middle.

I have done a long flight in the middle before, but not with a bad ankle.

I am going to see if they have anything in first class, smile real big and bat my eyes.

Although, I’m not one to really use feminine wiles to get my way, a smile, and a please and a thank you generally go far.

I use my manners more than anything else.

I doubt it will happen, but I will ask.

Can’t hurt to ask.

And.

I will ask for getting on early so that I don’t have to hobble on with every one else.

I definitely needed extra time to get through security.

I kept my shoes on and my ankle brace on and the security did a pat down and a chemical swipe of my shoes.

It was rather funny, but I wasn’t in a hurry and I was glad that they let me keep my shoes on.

I have my ankle wrapped pretty well and my plain Jane sensible walking shoes on.

I do hope that I will be able to do the museums and to be able to get to some spots that I want to.

Fuck.

At this moment I have completely changed my thoughts and plans regarding my flight, I am sitting in the boarding area next to a very loud woman who is reciting a great deal of evangelical text at great volume.

Listen lady.

It’s too late to save me.

I’ve already saved myself.

Take your proselytizing and go elsewhere.

PS.

I can’t hear you anymore now that I put on my oversized Head Candy noise cancelling headphones.

All I can here is the playlist my French friend put together for me.

“Pour Carmen.”

Merci bein mon amie, je t’aime trop la musique.

I also have been doing the internet fall into a hole looking at all the fun stuff that is happening in Paris this upcoming weekend and week.

I almost got into to the pop up sauna that is at the Moulin Rouge, but it was fully booked.

Oh well.

There are plenty of things to do.

I have been popping around the Time Out Paris magazine.

It’s fun to pursue all the things.

I don’t actually have any agenda anymore.

I can’t do Paris the way that I have done in previous years, at a full tilt boogie.

Nope.

I will be going slow.

I will be soaking in the City of Lights.

I shall be walking slow.

Moving slow.

Seeing it all.

Taking it in.

I’ll still go to plenty of museums, how can I not, but I will be pretty strategic about it, I don’t think I will do the Louvre, I mean, I may, but only a few certain parts, I will have to pick maybe one wing and then one floor instead of trying to do two of the wings, it’s just miles of walking and I don’t have miles of walking in me.

I figure I will find my spot and sit and stare at some art and get my fill.

Fuck.

I don’t know what I am going to do.

I am just going.

I mean I really do have to toss out all the ideas I had about what I would be up to.

I have to scale way back.

But.

That’s not necessarily a bad thing for me.

A little restraint.

That can be a good thing.

I know I will have an amazing time and I know I will have adventures.

I will meet people, I will see old friends.

In fact, I have a date to go to Rue Madame with a friend on Sunday and catch up with him and some fellows and then off to stroll, hobble, around Les Jardins de Luxembourg.

That’s the Luxembourg Gardens, if you didn’t figure that out.

I will definitely be sitting still more than I have in the past and I am thinking I may use the buses a lot more than when I lived there, the stairs up and down the Metro are going to be hard.

I can’t dash.

So, maybe staying street level most the time.

And going places where I can really get a lot of bang for my buck, like the city center, the Marais, etc.

Ah.

It’s all good.

I’m ok.

I get to go, my ankle wasn’t so badly sprained that I can’t get out of bed.

I mean, had it been as severe as the one I sustained three years ago I would have been fucked.

I probably would have cancelled the trip.

So.

I am grateful, super grateful, for that and I will not bitch or complain.

I shall take the experience as it has been given to me with a great big smile and a very sincere Merci bien.

Trop merci.

Merci beaucoup.

Ooh.

The flight crew is coming in.

Got to jet.

Er.

Hobble off.

Into the sunset.

See you in Paris!

Trop bisoux pour toi.

xxxxxx

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Everybody’s Got Their Own Agenda

March 24, 2015

I heard her voice in my head as I shouted at the woman who passed me on the right and pushed me into traffic on the commute into work.

I had already had a few moments of uneasiness on my bicycle.

It rained last night.

Not a lot.

But enough.

The roads were slick this morning and as I was pedaling across Lincoln at 20th my back wheel slipped under me a moment.

I righted and breathed and continued forward, cautious, but aware.

Again the wheel slipped, just a touch, rounding a corner in the Pan Handle.

When it’s just damp enough to cause all the street oil to sluice up to the top of the pavement it feels scarier then when it is a full on down pour.

Slick roads are worse in my estimation than rain.

I thought about the rest of the commute and that I had time.

I always give myself ten minutes more than I need to get to work.

I like to get off my bike, stretch out my shoulders, wiggle out any kinks in my legs and drink some water.

I like to also have caught my breath and had a moment to get centered before entering the fray.

Monday’s especially can be a ruckus, especially after having two days with mom and dad, the charges are not always grateful to see me, despite having fun moments after I arrive.

Upon arrival I often hear a “no!” or “go away!” or the pitter patter of feet running to mom and dad.

That’s ok.

I’m used to it kid.

Sometimes I get the opposite response, but not always.

So, lots of time for me to travel my way cross town.

Monday’s are also a challenge for me as a bicycle commuter.

It is the one day of the week that I go into work early and as such I am in actual commuter traffic.

Not just car commuter and Google Bus commuter, but bicycle commuter, traffic.

I will forget, have forgotten, most other days that there are many, many, many more bicycles on the road then there used to be and also that four days of the week I am riding in to work outside of busy rush hour traffic.

Not so Mondays.

I generally am hitting the end of the rush, but I can get caught in it, or catch up to it, almost always on the Wiggle, sometimes in the Pan Handle if the lights are not in my favor.

I was doing alright after negotiating the Wiggle until I crossed Duboce and hopped onto Sanchez.

As I was crossing over Market headed toward 17th, a rider passed me on the right.

DON’T PASS ON THE RIGHT!

I yelled, startled.

Damn it lady.

You’re forcing me into traffic and riding in my blind spot.

Stupid lady.

I didn’t say bitch.

No.

I was annoyed though and thought about giving her a lecture on being polite to other bicyclists.

I mean, I pass cars all the time on the right, except when they are signaling a right turn, then I go around to the left.

Bicyclists and pedestrians, though, I always pass on the left.

And yes.

I am that annoying person who hollers out, “on your left.”

Sometimes I will whistle sharply if I think a person can’t hear me who may be crossing an intersection while looking at their phone screen.

But most of the time I pass on the left and I let you know that I am there.

It’s something I learned on training rides in 2010 when I rode in the Aids LifeCycle tour from San Francisco to Los Angeles.

I learned a lot on those rides.

How to fix a flat, how to carry momentum to get up a hill, how to ride clipless, how to ride a back to back, how to ride a Century (100 miles) what it felt like to bonk, what I needed to do to not bonk, how it felt riding Whites Hill in Marin the first time.

How it felt climbing Mount Tam and doing the Southern Hills Climb.

How saddle sores felt.

I happily will skip having that experience again.

I occasionally rue not having registered for the ride this year, I was thinking about it a lot, but I decide to apply to graduate school and go to Atlanta for the International Conference, and see my grandmother in Chula Vista and go to Burning Man.

That’s more than enough for my plate this year.

And I still have a few ideas up my sleeve for travel.

I learned a lot of courtesy on those rides and what it felt like when another rider did not extend the same courtesy to me.

Sometimes I can be an asshole and need to prove a point and I could feel that come up in me when I saw the woman on her bicycle stopped at the traffic light at Sanchez and 16th.

I wanted to lecture her.

I wanted to tell her how it’s done.

I know better though.

It’s not my place to tell another person how to live their life and I had a flash of a driver yelling out the window at me to “wear a fucking helmet!”

Which doesn’t do much from saving my startled self when I get screamed at.

Hey asshat, when you are so focused on the behavior of someone else you’re ignoring yourself.

Just saying.

So when I coasted in to a stop at 16th and Sanchez I held my tongue.

I looked at the woman.

She was oblivious.

She was not seeing me as I was straddling my bike waiting for the light to change.

She also was fiddling with her phone and had ear phones in, so the likelihood that she heard me holler about passing on the right was nil, and she wasn’t going to hear me and my “friendly” I know better bicycle protocol about passing on the right.

I paused.

And I brought my attention to the road ahead of me.

The trickiest part of the commute, especially when its slick, the turn at Sanchez onto 17th.

There’s a great bike lane on 17th, but turning left I have to cross two sets of MUNI train tracks at a parallel instead of simply cutting straight across.

It is far to easy too slip on them.

I have in the past, but never gone down.

I kept my counsel, the light changed.

The woman hadn’t seen the light change, she was a bit behind me.

I signalled a left turn.

I signalled that I was slowing down, that’s a flat open palm hanging down at a right angle waving back and forth (think of a reverse beauty pageant queen on a float waving).

Then I signalled that I was coming to a slow stop.

A squeezing in of my hand into a ball.

I turned left.

I crossed at a diagonal and made it completely over the tracks with no slippage, I turned my head, the woman was directly to my left, riding in between the train tracks, not even in the bicycle lane.

“It’s your life lady,” I thought to myself and then, out of no where, I should move over, she’s going to pass me and cut me off again at the light.

I could just feel it.

Except.

Well.

She wiped out on the tracks.

She went down.

Hard.

I am still not sure how I avoided hitting her.

She was passing me and her bicycle nearly toppled me, I weaved to the right, and rolled off my pedals, sliding my feet out of my foot retention straps (oh how do I love thee my Hold Fast straps) and squeezing slow and steady on my brake so I wouldn’t slip too.

It all happened in slow motion.

I can still see her right hand, fingers spread, reaching to catch her fall, I can see how if I hadn’t swerved just at that moment, how I would have rolled over her hand.

I shudder.

She broke her basket on her bike and bananas flew into the street.

A car drove over one and the smell of ripe banana wafted over the tracks and assaulted my nose.

“Are you ok?” I asked, stopping, looking back, “do you need help?”

“I’m ok, I’m ok,” she stood.

I watched her pick up her bicycle and shakily run her hands over her body.

“Are you sure?” I asked again.

“Yeah, thanks,” she said and waved me off.

The car that had rolled over the banana was stopped a few feet a head of me.

I rolled up on her.

“She ok?” The driver leaned out the window.

“Yeah, she’s ok,” I smiled.

The driver smiled.

“Whew.”

Be careful out there kids.

I was a little discombulated but so grateful that I hadn’t yelled at her.

That I kept my lecture to myself.

I am certain she learned what she needed.

That’s the thing.

We all learn exactly what we need when we need it and I can’t hurry any one’s process up.

Mine included.

I can be right.

Or.

I can be happy.

And today I was very happy to make it to work in one piece.

Very happy.


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