Back to School, Running Dogs

This week has been back to school for Citrus College, a local community college near where I live. The middle school and elementary school down the street started last week. This confluence of events has led to major traffic (yay biking places) between the gym and my home.

And apparently, drivers cannot see people on bikes. I so need to get an air horn to honk at people that think they can just make turns right into me. I think the college drivers are by far the worst. The parents at the schools arrive early and drive carefully. They don’t want to hit anyones child. College students? They don’t care about anything more than grabbing that last parking spot and making it to class on time (and yeah, these are the same people that don’t see pedestrians in crosswalks).

I miss midsummer when I could ride without worrying (a lot) whether someone would see me or not. It’s not like I’m invisible!

This also reminds of the two dogs that chased me down the street. One was a young puppy (big breed)—probably adolescent, six months or so—who had obviously escaped his yard or home and just wanted to play so he (or she) chased me down a busy street for a good half block or more.

The other dog was much older, much small dog was leashed (though the owner thought it a good idea to not hold it, I don’t know why) and chased me from the safety of the sidewalk. The woman (owner) had to chase down her dog. I hope it didn’t get hit, but honey, that’s why you hold the leash. So it doesn’t run away from you.

I suppose this has a moral. Or maybe not. Just don’t hit bicyclists that follow traffic laws. And also leash your dogs. Is that right?


Almost Stuck in Union Station

I totally meant to right this on Sunday, but alas, I forgot. Not enough sleep the night before. Anywho …

Last Thursday night, I went to visit my brother, who lives in Culver City. As most of you know (or maybe you don’t), my mode of transport is usually the bike as the car I drive is failing, dying, etc. It simply cannot be fixed on the means I have and that’s fine. My fortunes will change eventually (and hopefully soon).

To get out to Culver City, I couldn’t really drive. It’s out of range for me. As the car leaks coolant, I didn’t want to risk having the engine burn out.  So, I made a compromise: I would drive to Pasadena (the extent I’m willing to go as I know it’s safe enough to drive to and fro) and take the trains to a station near my brother and he would pick me up.

That part was fine. Easy. We had dinner and then played part of a game (perhaps a shorter game next time?) and I left his apartment at the absolute latest I could possibly to catch the very last train. Eek! I was already worried that I might miss it, but my phone told me that, according to schedule, I would be fine. Just barely.

The first leg went off without a hitch. I arrived at the second station where I needed to catch the Red or Purple line back to Union Station to get my train to Pasadena. I arrived one minute later than expected—so I was a little worried I might miss one of the trains, but they came every few minutes. I would be fine. Except that they were doing maintenance on one of the tracks and they would only be coming every 20 minutes (which actually was 30 from when I arrived).

Resigned to my fate, I sat on the platform and had a mini freak-out. I would have to spend a good 4 hours in Union Station to catch the first morning train from Los Angeles to Pasadena at 3:40 am. Not something I was really wanting to do. I hadn’t planned for the maintenance and hadn’t known it would take place. I am okay with some plans changing, but really I need some order especially when it comes to me not being home for sleep time (I need my sleep!). In any case, the train finally arrive a good 15 minutes after the last train was scheduled to leave for Pasadena.

I got to Union Station, and decided that I would at least try to see if my train would be there, hope against hope that I could get home that night. After all, there would certainly be other passengers stranded, right?

People waiting on the Gold Line platform had to be good news. I called a friend after receiving a few texts (no cell service in the subway, darn it!) and told her my plight. Just talking about it helped a little. But, I reasoned, if people were waiting and this line was under maintenance as well, then I’d be okay right?

Yes. After a few minutes (and being told by security to stay behind the yellow line), a train came. Small, but heaven-sent and beautiful. I would not be stuck in Los Angeles for another 3 hours. I finally could breath and relax. I got to the car and got home, no more incidents. Though I was an hour later than I had hoped, it was better than spending half a night in a train station. Whew.

Next time, I’ll have to pay more attention to the signs or something ….

Game Night

So, every few months, my friends Jason and Gabriel host a game night. Last night was one of them. As I work Saturdays, and the night starts at 1, I’m always late (sad face). But I go until the wee hours of the morning—it’s always fun.

I prepared by having a delicious iced mocha to keep me up and going (I normally get home between 1 and 2 am). I only got to play two games: one was a word association game, and the other was Shadows Over Camelot (which I won, yay being the Traitor!). Even though I only played two games last night.

Anyway, it was great to see the people I’ve met and always good to meet new people. In that setting, I’m comfortable enough because I know more people and I trust the hosts to know who is going to attend and keep it fun and not drag the group down. And mix the personalities well enough so that everyone gets along—even after a few betrayal games.


Learning to Square Dance

Last night, I went to a fundraiser for at The Village at Ed Gould Plaza (LAn Gay and Lesbian Center) with a friend of mine to support a friend running the event.

The Podunk Poets played at the event, what one of my friends described as “California Country.” And so I learned to square dance at the event. Let’s say that it took quite a few practices and a good amount of time for our group to get the steps down—once we did it was fun. When the band started the second set, we danced to one song and then the group broke up. As there was no one calling, we just kind of winged it. After spend that time learning, you’d think more people would have wanted to stay out there for a little longer, but the squares broke into lines, and I cannot line dance (just about the same as I can’t square dance).

Anyway, it was a fun event, and I learned something new. Thanks to D for getting me out on the dance floor when otherwise I wouldn’t have gone.

Have you done anything fun this week?

P.S. Hoping to do another meditation workshop in September for those of you that missed.