Sunday, October 11, 2009

A Woman From My Past

Greetings Readers

I would have to say that on Saturday, October 10 2009 that was the coldest day I have experienced riding out in the cold this Fall thus far.

I had to some errands and I really did not want to, but I had to since the bank closes early on Saturday and a sale ends on Saturday so I had to go and get what I wanted before Sunday. In addition, I was going to stop at a few other places on the way to here and there.

I was expecting to see a lot of snow on the ground, but alas very light falling snow in the morning and the air was cold enough to breathe in the cold into your lungs. No snow on the pavement, per se, but some snow accumulation in the shadows and the fallen leaves on the ground. Matter of fact, the pavement was probably warm so it melted the snow and turned into some patchy ice in the night.

I did go out on the balcony to test the air and temperature and decided that I was going to wear a light jacket, full finger gloves, and my Natalie Merchant stocking cap and then skin tight long biking pants. I brought along my ZZ Top Bandanna, but elected not to wear it since I would be going into several business that I might bring unnecessary attention to myself. Meaning, wearing a bandanna and a cap into a financial institution is something I want to avoid.

Anyway, the temperature was in the mid twenties, barely, but there was a noticeable wind blowing. My first stop was about 2 miles away and from that point on I would have stops between one to two miles apart. Enough time for me to warm up inside a business and then head out the door.

First stop – done, Second stop – done, although that portion of riding was the coldest. I could feel the wind chill and coldness biting into my legs. I could feel the cold air going down into my jacket without the bandanna around my neck. Third stop – done, but had a harder time protecting myself from the elements of the wind and wind chill. Little did I know that the wind chill temperature was at 14 degrees. I know when the temperature is about 10 degrees – I can feel the coldness and I can feel my skin tingling to the temperature. Mentally I am ok, but physically my body is reacting to the biting cold.

My last stop was at Best Buy and I decided to browse the store more than I wanted to. First of all, I literally had to warm up my body temperature core. I was minutely shaking uncontrollably and knew that I had to warm up my body before the 5 plus mile ride home. I browsed the music section, but that was one of the reasons why I was at Best buy. I had to buy the new Tiesto CD – Kaleidoscope that came out this past week.

After the music section I went to the DVD section. Boy Readers, it has been a long time since I bought a DVD and browsed the DVD’s. The Blue Ray DVD’s have definitely expanded. I remember about 2 aisle shelves of Blue Rays the last time I was Best Buy, but I saw about 10 shelves of Blue Rays on this visit. Unfortunately, the Blue Rays still have not come down in price for me to think of buying any Blue Rays.

After the DVD’s I headed to the computer and PS2 and PS3 games. I looked, but not really looked since the prices were high to me. About two weeks I bought Mercenaries 2 on PS3 (at a Used Game Stores) for about $ 8.00 and change; whereas a brand new copy was for $ 49.00 in Best Buy. And Readers I bought that game for $ 8.00 and it was so not worth it. I played that game for about 30 minutes or so and I have not played it since.

I would have to estimate that I spent about 30 minutes to 45 minutes in Best Buy and now knew that I had to get home. The sooner the better, since the temperature may be falling even more. Though, I had no clue. The only part that sucked was that between Best Buy and home was nothing. My route was through the suburban neighborhood and there was no commercial business (es) between Best Buy and home that I could “warm up” in.

However, just beyond the Best Buy was the Qdoba store that opened up about a month ago. I have been in that Qdoba’s once, but only once. The store design is all fucked up Readers. Anyway, I figure a Burrito and technically the last stop before the “long” ride home in the biting cold would keep me warm til I get home.

I walked in the new Qdoba store and walked all the way to the back to order my lunch.

I was looking at the menu and waiting for the lady in front of me to finish up ordering. Just warming up and trying to figure out at the last second what I was going to order.

Note: Readers, I am going to say this, but in no means am I racial profiling or race discrimination. In the four Qdoba’s I frequent “in my hood” the employees are mostly Latino, Mexican, or Hispanic.

While I waiting for the burrito lady to finish up I noticed out of the corner of my eye an employee, a Mexican woman I assumed, glancing at me while I was waiting for my turn. I paid no attention since I was just warming up and waiting.

The burrito lady finished up with the lady and then she asked what I want. Steak burrito – black.

Soon, I was handed off to the next person in line and lo and behold that Mexican woman who was glancing at me was my Qdoba girl. What the fuck?! Of course, I played it cool. I nodded and said hi. I gave no indication that I was happy or surprised to see my Qdoba girl. Yes Readers, I was surprised, but not happy. There was no happy smile and said “cheese and tomatoes.” I offered no small talk or any additional attention.

I made eye contact about two times with my Qdoba girl and then I was off to the cash register lady.

I finished up giving my money and then was leaving the counter when I heard “Thank you for coming in” from my Qdoba girl.

I did not acknowledge what my Qdoba girl said to me, but just kept on walking without looking back to the counter and soon I was out the door into the cold Saturday afternoon fall air.

Almost forgot as I was riding home I nearly forgot about the ZZ Top bandanna I had in my bag. I stopped, pulled that bandanna and wrapped it around my neck like a gunslinger and then rode off a bit warmer

After I got home it took about 2 hours for my body temperature to equalize. My skin in places would not warm up due to the extreme cold I experience that afternoon.

Until the next time

Daryl Charley
The Fallen Athlete

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