Thursday, September 29, 2011

Paper Mache!

Tuesday ended up being taken by extra bus runs, for which I am not complaining, and tomorrow is a field trip. I'm supposed to have a paper mache globe finished by this weekend, I figured today I better get moving! I started it ages ago and we have had half a sphere laying upside down on a coffee table. I just hadn't really ever felt like re-inflating the sphere to the right size to do the other half. What can I say, I'm lazy.

But now we're starting a new Pathfinder campaign, and instead of this being a globe for Jamie's world, we decided it would be much cooler to make the Pathfinder world. We also don't plan on letting it take up space here at home. A Pathfinder globe would look really cool strung up in the game store.

I am totally working hard in this picture. 
(It isn't staged at all with a self-timer and clean hands.)

Also, I've taken a look at my kickstand. I got mad at it and sort of stomped it to bent it back. Then it wobbled when I got home and I felt bad. I looked and there is a monstrous allen head bolt that I can tighten to fix the wobble. Perhaps that is the issue causing all the trouble in the first place. I'm sorry bike, I should not have been angry at you. 

My Bike needs a name...

It doesn't have a neat model name like Betty Foy or Oma, but I think it would be neat to refer to it by name rather than "my bike." Do you have any suggestions on names for my bicycle?

I have lots of projects I should work on. Some sound more fun than others: globe, beading, wrench roll, vest, handlebar bag and crate liner, jacket... I have to hurry up and get going or the list will get too long!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Buses, Frustrations, Bikes

This being my third day of actually being a bus driver, as opposed to a substitute, I like to think I'm not asking for too much.
This route I've gotten is pretty much bottom-of-the-barrel. I've been told these kids constantly have substitutes, and because of this, the route itself is slightly different than what is printed on paper.


If you constantly have someone who doesn't regularly drive that route, my thinking would be along the lines of: that's great! Follow directions, you're good to go. Noooo...

There were kids standing at all kinds of weird places, including a chicken food place. I'm sorry, do I look like a taxi? No. I'm big and yellow and last time I checked, which was this morning, it said School Bus on the side. And the front, and back. I am not a pleasure conveyance to pick up and drop off wherever a 15 to 18 year old feels like. I'm sorry, it is not my fault whatsoever that these kids got used to doing things wrong for however long they got away with it. Getting mad at me won't do any good, because I ride my bike 3 miles to work 4 times a day, and ALL of them live closer to the school than me. They have feet if they don't like it, and I'm about this close to telling them that.

The students here are snippy with bad attitudes. They act as if the bus is theirs, and how dare I even talk to them, much less ask them to make sure that window is halfway up (I was told these lovely gorgeous windows must never be all the way down, lest in that cataclysmic accident I have, a student falls out through that wide open gap. I think it might be a better alternative, personally.). They have not properly been denied the riding privilege, I think. It is not a right to ride the bus I'm driving, people, it is a privilege.

The fact that a route can get this messed up, and that people knew about it, bothers me. A route should never be allowed to get in the situation mine is in, and I can't even wait the whole week to write an email to my boss asking that he DO something. We've talked about it, sure, but meanwhile these kids are still ingrained in their bad habits and I have no leg to stand on to start fixing them. Well, maybe this will become an official stop, and eventually, I'll be allowed to leave their butts on the side of the road. That's not good enough.

The substitute for me yesterday was a mechanic. He used no directions. This is bad, people. I'm glad that you can keep things pretty much the same for 5 years straight, but I'm darn sure gonna tell you that this is the way it is today, yesterday is long gone. Grr. Those kids really got me in a bad mood this morning.

There is a stop at Soandso Rd and Suchandsuch Ave. Problem is, Soandso Rd turn into Suchandsuch Ave, right in a fairly gentle curve. Suchandsuch Ave also is a branch off to the east of Soandso Rd just before the curve. So I naturally believe the stop is at the intersection of the branch, not where the road changes names. There are a couple students at both places, so I am literally stopping, picking a couple up, and then going a couple bus lengths further to get the others. That is dumb. So I said in what I thought was a perfectly polite tone for the two at the name change to please wait at the intersection in the mornings. You'd have thought I asked them to walk 50 miles in a blizzard. The one girl was snippy and explained to me that the stop has been there for yaddyadda... you get the idea.

I'm about to give up on trying Mrs. Nicegirl. I wrote my boss and asked him to fix it, and put the updated printout in my box.

It also irks me to no end that the students who put up such a fuss over the stop on my first substituted route are back where they aren't supposed to be.

The chaos in this county is starting to get on my nerves. The bus shop is messy with pieces and parts all over... I guess I'm just not used to the way things are around here. I want to straighten things up and organize and structure. I want to know exactly who does what and what goes where. I don't really want to see the supervisor hopping on a bus in the afternoon to drive! So far it seems like he's supposed to be in charge of everything, which sucks because then you end up standing in a long line after the AM and PM runs just to ask a simple question. Not to mention all the phone calls and other stuff.


In other subjects, my bike is wonderful, of course. I gave it a bath Monday, and briefly wondered if I was being silly to think about wanting something to make the tires shiny like on a car. I took my crate off and shined up all my shinies, put everything back, and aired up the tires. The ancient hose on the ancient electric air compressor has a tiny leak at the connection where bending has weakened it after all this time. It's still perfectly usable, though.

I got sort of scared Monday morning on my commute before this bike love. My tires threw up an abnormal amount of gravel into the fenders, making a loud ringing sound almost constantly at first. The more it happened, the more I was worried, because while there isn't really a lot of glass along my route, if the tires were snatching up all these pebbles, would I get my first flat tire today? After I aired the tires, though, it only helped a little. I suppose the rain we had recently might have washed more gravel into my path. It doesn't look any different to me, but ringing fenders isn't really a cause of nervousness anymore.

The only thing I forgot to do was lubricate the chain. It was especially obvious to me that it wanted some love too. I passed by a chain link fence with those plastic inserts to make them more like a plank fence and hide what's inside. As I did, I got an admirable echo of the horrible noise my chain is making. Listening without the fence, I thought it might have been tire noise, although wind makes everything harder to hear.

At 35 degrees (isn't that almost freezing temperature?) I need to wear a hat, and thin long sleeves under my jacket. Actually, I'm pretty sure an ear-warming band or muffs would be ok. The hat not only doesn't fit under my helmet properly, but also made my brow sweaty. I had a hot neck too, which I thought was weird because it's the same windbreaker with the same collar that I always wear. Sneakers with knee socks, regular pants, and my gloves were also part of the outfit. I think I really like those gloves. That's quite a temperature range they have, though I am worried about when things go below freezing.

I'm also happy to report that Jamie was coming out behind me yesterday, and I already had my lights on and the bike through the gate. He said something to the effect of "wow, that's obnoxious" in reference to my rear light. It's under my crate because I can't mount it as intended to the seat post. I set it to the flash mode, as I believe a flashing light can be seen much better, especially a moving one. His comment made me happy that I am obviously visible to drivers. If I am annoying, its only because they can see me!

I'm considering moving my front light. It is not on the... headset? Handlebar stem? I think it's called a stem. Anyway, I wanted it sideways because that way the beam is more spread out. Mounted vertically on the handlebar means that the main center light should be pointed out and slightly down, and then you'd have the smaller side light close to your wheel, and the other one... at the sky? Maybe aimed at taller truck drivers.
Hmm, now I'm wondering why I don't have it that way, as it seems a better choice anyway with all the buses I pass (and of course wave at). Anyway, I want to move the light to the handlebars so I can make a cute handlebar bag to hang there under the bar.

I also really wanted a bag that could line the crate. I'm not sure if I should make that though. I really want the folding baskets that Wald makes. I don'tknow if making two bags (in the case I get these crates as a present) would work, I'd have to compare measurements. I've noticed that the crate keeps weight like my heavy purse too high, so that when the kickstand is down and I try to park the bike, it wants to fall over. Actually I'm really mad at the kickstand right now, because the bike is wanting to fall over even with the crate empty. It ends up with the front wheel ridiculously skewed and weight leaning heavily on the stand. I can't see that the kickstand is bent, though. It looks normal to me. So of course, with this happening and with me reading the LGRAB blog, I am really seriously wanting a double-footed kickstand, which would let my bike sit up straight and pretty like I want it to. (I've been working my way backwards through their archive looking for tips and tricks- I'm up to page 40, whoo!)

The LGRAB blog also gave me another great idea!  Jessie, you should share my blog! We could change the name to something cute, and then we could both post and everyone could be amused by our stories. Can we, can we? Pretty please with sugar on top?

If anyone reading has any comments or advice about today's topics, please don't be shy! I love to hear that someone actually is reading, and sharing ideas is always welcome. I hope I don't bore you with always talking about my work or my bike, but I tell it how it is, and that's how is it currently :P

(PS, I'll have to practice this "short post" thing, huh?)

Monday, September 26, 2011

Monday Monday Monday

I made the decision that I should resolve to post more often, and shorter posts. I've read before that a blog should be this way, but I didn't particularly care what other people chose to do with their blogs, since this was mine and just for my family.

But I've hit a problem with this theory: 1) If you don't want to read every little thought in my head that i feel like writing about, you don't have to. The glory of a blog over mass-emailing is that it doesn't give the same feeling of intrusion and spam. You either read or you don't. And 2) I forget things if I wait too long to type them. I had wonderful things to report Saturday but I put it off, and then completely did not feel like writing at all. So you get very little of the original wackiness that is me.

I made a rope for Jamie. He brought home MuleTape from work, and original wanted to make a hammock with it. This sounds familiar. Another drawback to waiting to write is that 3) I can't remember what I've already talked about previously, and what I might have missed. Anyway i took the Muletape and created a rope and if I were not lazy I could hook up the laptop to retrieve the pictures from my camera. But I AM lazy. I have lost or left in Florida the cable that is supposed to let me hook the camera to the computer to get the pictures out of it.

I saw duckies, but you can't see them either.

And today I washed my bike.

On the bright side, I've gotten a lot of information and inspiration from a blog I stumbled across Let's go Ride a Bike. Two girls from Chicago and Nashville ride bikes in their regular, quite adorable, clothes. They wear mostly dresses, and even bike throughout the winter, and have done this since 2008. I've been wading my way through 91 pages of posts to get current, and they are awesome people. I'm not like them at all: no fashion sense, horrible photographer, shy. But I'm passionate about things I like, and I love my bike. I want to be like them. I aspire to sew my own nice clothes and dress cutely or nice all the time. I think with my twin's help (/Jedimindtrick You want to move to Oregon) it could be done easily. She has the eye for both awesome clothes and a great camera shot to share with the world, and we would have a blast going to fun places like to get an icecream cone or maybe the game store or Daily Bagel.

But they post almost daily, and that seems a much better idea, if I have the time. I expect I will most days. They also categorize things. I'm not sure if they actually have splits in topics or not, but a different focus for bike stuff and bus things I think might be nice.
I know my dad gets antsy when I don't write for a while :P I think this way I might share more, and I have to believe that someone besides my immediate family might be interested in what I write. Of course if it is just them in my audience, that is ok too. /waveatfamily

So that's it for now, I hope I can stick with this new plan of action, and I should be back soon. Goodnight!

Friday, September 16, 2011

Happy Friday 9/16

Yay for Fridays!

This week started off a little rocky with the kids from the high/middle schools. They are used to being picked up at a certain corner, if I haven't mentioned this previously, and their stop has been moved a small distance to a corner opposite. They also have another stop on the same side of the road as the old one, also only a block or less away, in case they don't feel like crossing the 25mph road (coming down from 40mph).

I told them the last couple of day last week that I would not be able to pick them up there because that was not an authorized stop, it's been moved, yadda yadda. Well they were there Monday again. I asked over the radio if I could pass them by, dispatch of course had me grab them. I told them again. (Meanwhile the afternoons are totally under my control, they have only been let off in the right spots, mind you.) Tuesday, I didn't ask over the radio, but I had permission to get the point across another way without abandoning them. I passed them by, after stopping at their authorized spot and calling out the window that they should come over if they wanted to go to school. No one moved. So, I turned the corner, and promptly proceeded straight past them without slowly, to the next stop. A truck immediately pulled out to follow me and a dad or someone got out and felt like arguing with me. I was very polite, I think. He was going on about why did I pass that stop, and its the right stop of course because it was there last year, and how could we want these kids to cross a highway... I advised him that the stop was changed the end of last year, this was not a new change, there was this stop I'm sitting at if he would like his students to not have to cross the road, although a 25mph speed limit did not constitute a highway. Anyway, he looked like he'd argue all day long, so I then interrupted him as he was about to start again and asked him if he would like to number to my supervisor to discuss the matter further. With a smile. Of course he immediately jumped at that chance, and I wrote the number (rather badly, as my fingers were stiff from the slight chill and I hadn't worn gloves) for him. Then I closed the door and pulled over with my hazards on and the group of kids who had been walking while I was talking boarded the bus. They were quite upset.

So Wednesday comes, and again I've warned them that their stop was not this particular corner. Again they are waiting there. I do the same thing, and they walk very leisurely up to the bus while I wait pulled over. I tell them tomorrow I will not pause. I say it again that afternoon.

They decided not to call my bluff (which it wasn't, I was gonna leave em!). Yesterday that corner was deserted, and I had a few at the catty-corner, and then the rest must have been at the stop a block away. I was slightly disappointed in that evil way that wanted to be mean. Oh well.

Now I'll be writing a referral on Monday for the punk who thinks its funny to stand up when I'm halfway down the road to his stop in the afternoon. He stays standing until I stop, even though I asked him to sit down. I also warned him first that I'd write a referral today if he didn't quit. Well, I asked his name and he did a "pfft" and promptly got off the bus. Really? His referral just got the maximum I can put on it.

Overall, things are settling down. I hope I don't lose this route with the next bid. It's 3.5 hours and that's pretty decent. Plus I'm just starting to recognize faces and try to remember names.

Almost every day I'm learning something new. Today I took my bus to get washed. There's a bus wash here! I think I'll go every week. It's like an automated car wash, only 30 seats more awesome. It's not near as long as being in a car, either, which surprised me. The man, who directed me into the right position, also squeegeed my windshield afterward and dried my mirrors. Shiny bus! Drat, now the inside looks that much worse. The dust here is everywhere, I feel like I need to mop the floors, they look only marginally better from sweeping. Also, the dash is awful. I wiped some of it off with tissues, but it needs a good wipe down.
I've been told how to pull over to let other buses by for the combination school. Of course, I did that but pulled up too far I guess. So the lady in front of me was chatting with me about that today. Also, I've been told how to drain the air system, and that I don't have to pre-trip AM and PM, just once per day. I can also turn right on red here. Slowly but surely I will stop being a total newbie.

As for me, I'm doing great. I ride my bike back and forth to work twice a day, and to various stores when I want to. I went to Walmart, Fred Meyer (Walmart competitor) and to downtown to see the bike shop. They gave me a map, which is great, because I didn't want to print one out. I've marked places on it to find easier. It's better than a regular map because the multi-use path is on there. I also went to Jo-Ann today. I got lots of coupons and have also needed a beading needle, and was itching to make some streamers for the bike. After a fun bit of back-and-forth sending of pictures to narrow down four fabric to just two, I got a cute fabric that I want to make a basket liner and handlebar bag from.

I picked out a bunch of ribbons to match to make my streamers. They came out awesome!

I ended up using a flat precision screwdriver to pry the handlebar endcaps off after asking youtube how to attach streamers. I used a philips head screwdriver to sort of twist-bore a hole into the ends. Then I got my ribbons and cut them, and sealed them with a lighter. Tied a knot, threaded them in, and Ta Dah! Happiness in ribbon form. They flutter in the breeze somewhat randomly, usually one side better than the other for a while. The ribbon is shiny in the sun and the black half-sheer one has a metallic green center that flashes. I tried the record them, but my phone takes yucky video and I didn't think to dig out my camera.

This morning was cold! Cold is apparently below 50F. At 50, I can wear a short sleeve shirt and my windbreaker, which ends up all the way unzipped and I consider the worth of stopping long enough to take it off sometimes. My upper arms get warm and confined-feeling about halfway through the ride. By the time I get there I'm glad to get it off. I have done my white knee-length shorts at this temperature fine also, it just takes a second for me to warm for the wind to stop chilling my legs. My jean skirt is cute, but slightly too tight to bike in. I had my bike shorts underneath anyway, but it rides up as my legs go up and down and the nose of the seat also helps make it ride shorter than I want. 

However, my boots are totally fine on the bike. Since learning how to have the seat adjusted I've gradually gone from putting my foot centered on the pedal to having the ball of my foot there like I'm supposed to. (I remember trying it when I read about seat height and thinking it was weird.) This means that having a higher heel doesn't matter to me at all. Actually, stepping down at intersections was kind of nice, not so far to step. The boots made me feel kind of girly and pretty riding down the road. I need to make sure to wear my tall socks with them though, because calves do sweat a little.

Now I need to do something with my awful blue helmet! It doesn't match anything, and I feel awesome when things match nicely. I've considered paint, and also maybe trying to cover the shell with fabric, or weaving my ribbons like plaid over it.... Not sure yet.

Oh and.....
I need a hanky. A two-toned one, so I know which side is the snotty one. I've been carrying a viva paper towel in my windbreaker pocket, but it's kind of a pain to unfold one-handed to use. I knew I'd need more than just a flimsy paper towel today (and that brand isn't one to scoff at either). I grabbed a white wash cloth to be a hanky. After a couple uses, I was glad I had my gloves, and I had to look careful because I wasn't sure which side was which! I got it wrong once, but not catastrophically. 

And most of the reason I have such a horrible nose today is because: guess what?! My wonderful immune system shows its patheticness yet again with an astounding record-breaker of the EIGHTH day of school to catch the cold. Yes the, because it's virtually guaranteed that throwing all these kids together to share germs will spawn something that your system hasn't seen before. Yay me. I hope it gets better over the weekend, because I've been tired-feeling all day and it's been hard to concentrate. It might be showing in my writing today....

Tonight Jamie is already at a friend's house fixing the brakes on the black car. We took it over there last week. Our friend is making us dinner so we have sort of a hang-out night planned. Also this weekend we'll be going to Medford to look around. Oh, the Target is there! I need to spend my gift card. I need bike lights before it starts getting too dark, that sounds perfect. The rest can be candy or something. 
I know I said we were going to the fair last weekend, but really it isn't worth mentioning, it was ridiculously tiny. After we found out, we figured it's not that much of a surprise that Deland's fair was huge, since it was populated with so many rednecks. Next time we'll try for the Oregon state fair. I thought being in California this one would have been big, but it was a small county fair instead. Klamath's was bigger, but still small. I'm looking forward to Medford and a mall. Really it's not very far away, only an hour and a half.

So goodbye for now, and I'll let you all know how things went! Happy Friday!

Friday, September 9, 2011

Friday 9/9/11

Hooray, I made it a whole week!

I miss Flagler schools. They seem so much more organized than these here, with the angled parking, the administrators actively participating in student loading and unloading, the assigned spaces. There is much less radio use here, which doesn't really affect me much except that my radio is crackly. There are three schools in one here, which only serves to create a lot of unnecessary cramping. A summer reorganizing and paving would do wonders. We have assigned spaces, but not to where each bus can independently get to. I was early and therefore had to wait until the buses in front of me arrived to allow them to get to their spots. (Actually I didn't know I had to wait, I thought there was room for them to pull in. I ended up backing up with another driver's assistance, and now I know better.)

The kids here are impolite and don't view me as anything other than a driver, not really worth interacting with. The younger ones are warming up a bit, but the older ones just ignore hellos goodbyes and have-a-good-weekends. It doesn't help that the route with the older ones is also a full house, so they are all smooshed together. The high schoolers also are waiting at the wrong stop. On Monday the principal will talk with them and I believe after that I get to leave their butts on the side of the road looking stupid. They were rude last year to the property belonging to the lady at the corner they currently stand at, which is why the stop was moved the the corner less than 30 yards away.

I pumped up my tires today. Apparently I need to check them a lot more often, maybe daily. I attached the electric pump and the gauge read 30psi. They can be 50-75. I pumped them to 70, figuring some would pst out when I removed the nozzle. What a difference! I gained 1-2 gears, meaning I was going faster with the same effort. I think I shaved off 4-5 minutes going to work this afternoon. I still had to shift down to the lowest gear for that dratted hill, though.

I also solved the skipping chain issue with a simple tiny twist of a barrel adjuster. I don't know whether I tightened or loosened the cable, but it was a really tiny adjustment and now each click moves the chain exactly one gear like it is supposed to and the chain doesn't skip to the lower or higher gear on its own. The noise it was making is also gone. It's like when I first got the bike out of the box! Or rather, when Dad got it put together for me out of the box. Yay.

My bike needs a bath! Apparently it gets dirty just like a car when you drive, or ride, every day. Is it weird to be proud of my bike dirt?

I want to get a green file crate from Walmart to strap to the rack. This is only because one of those is $2.97, versus the $20 that the folding Bell bike basket costs. They go on the sides of the rack like saddlebags and fold to a flat 1 inch wide when you don't want them out there catching air. However, eventually I will have cool baskets and I'll make neat basket liners (read: cloth bags that fit the baskets perfectly) with brown and pink and green on them so the bike looks pretty all together. I find it interesting and very awesome that my green windbreaker is the same shade as my bike trailer, which is also the same shade as the Sterilite crate I want to get. Whoo for awesome color-coordinating! I want to paint my helmet so it isn't that ridiculous clashing blue :P

AND I wore shorts today! The weather check last night said it was 50 (52?) degrees this morning. I knew it would warm up to 87, and I've been wanting shorts in the afternoons. So, I was chilly when I woke up, but I wore my white knee-length shorts and a red top to match my red, turquoise and white earrings. My legs were cold when I started out, and my fingers numb-hurt for a little while, but I warmed up super quick like always and ended up with an all-the-way unzipped windbreaker.

Jamie made a dinner that I need to start a recipe book to be able to do future requests. We got some neat little flat flower-shaped squash that goes by the name of pattypan, apparently. The game store guy had a giant cooler of them last Saturday and when Jamie asked him if he knew he had a tub of vegetables in his store, he told us yes, and they were ours. So we picked some out, including an adorable tiny one. Jamie took spicy sausage and cooked it with carrots and brown sugar and maple syrup and roasted this filling in the squash bowls. It was so delicious, and I was ravenous when I got home. I ate mine, slicing it up like steak, and then ate Jamie's squash too since he just scraped his out. I had leadbelly for HOURS, which was only alleviated at bedtime when I could lay down. Raiding was semi-torture and I couldn't wait for it to be over. But I was singing the praises of dinner all night to anyone I could type to. Or text :P Today he brought home bagels.

I also got Jamie's birthday present home by virtue of the side of my bike rack and some serious muscle applied to the bungee. I had my purse, my jacket, my waterbottle, and the box all secure with that sucker. I had to be careful to not let my heel hit the thing on the way home, but I did it. I had planned to fill a bag with clothes also for $2 from this yard sale. When I tried on the green hoody which would have made the perfect replacement for the fleecy one I abandoned for the broken zipper, I realized that this one had the exact same issue. And I don't feel like installing a new zipper, so no new pale green jacket.

I think we're going to the California fair this weekend, and I'm looking forward to that. I have a whole tube of Dramamine just in case. I also cleaned out my purse, which didn't lighten it up much, but I can find everything again.

I think that's it. Happy Friday, have a great weekend!!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Tuesday, no Wednesday! 9/7/11

Today is the second day of school. I'm proud to say that yesterday, I was a completely acceptable 4 minutes late to my stops. That's like a traffic light variance. Today, however, all the higher grades also came to school. I suppose they were allowed to skip yesterday for some reason. Traffic at the first school was worse today, and instead of arriving at the second elementary school at the printed 8:04, it was more like 8:19. I was not the only bus, so I didn't feel so bad. I'll be happy when all these parents go back to being lazy and leaving their kids to walk or ride as they will.

Parents here don't seem as nice to me. Yesterday three elementary schoolers got of on the wrong stop- a whole five houses away from where they were supposed to get off in their own driveway. They had lost the tiny post-it note with their address, didn't know their address, and couldn't grasp the concept that I had to drive in a loop. So I get to their stop where a mom is waiting, but no kids are standing up. Instead, she wants to let me know that HER kids walked all that way from the WRONG stop that I let them off at. As if how dare I not be able to read minds and know instinctively that this kid goes there and that one goes there. I'm more mad about it now than I was yesterday, when I was just being nice to her.

I got a rose this morning, though.

A little boy's birthday is today, he is eight. He brought some flowers on the bus with him that he and his younger brother picked from their garden, I suppose, and I got a small rose with a tiny stem. I tucked it into the seat belt cutter, which makes a nice visible holder for it.

The older kids on my first section wanted me to zoom over a hill. They swear that if I do it right we can catch air. I'm still too busy trying to figure out where addresses are, because i don't know which ones I'm supposed to skip. I hate that routes stay the same from year to year. If no kid lives there anymore, don't put it on the sheet.

Yesterday was also the first day I commuted by bike. Apparently doing that route four times a day is harder than just one trip to school for in-service. Who would have thought? The last one was much slower and in easier gears than the first trip. I arrived at home feeling like my jeans were boa constrictors and immediately changed into shorts. It was hotter in the house than outside and I was hot from pedaling. My bike is doing well, though, I guess. I think the chain needs lubing, I can hear it chinking slightly as I pedal, and I think its supposed to be silent. My shifter is a little off, maybe from rattling during the move, and so occassionally the chain will drop in gear and I have to fix it, but thats simple enough and not frequent enough to really worry about yet.

My tan pants with the thigh pocket are NOT bike-approved wear. They pull too tight while I'm pedaling, and also the seat is weird and tight and causes me to slip forward on the seat, so I'm constantly pushing back as I go. They were just bad. I've changed already.

I feel fat. During the health fair last week I scored poor or below average on almost everything. We just finished a month of P90X where I didn't change at all except to get back those arm muscles. I don't care about those stupid tiny bumps. I weighed 125 last week, and its in the middle of my cycle, so that wasn't even the reason. Eat more, eat less, exercise my butt off, or be lazy. It doesn't matter. WTF. Those pants really ticked me off.

Anyway, I'll keep riding my bike and see if that helps. It's fun, anyway, when I'm not tired. I get to see horses and birds and stuff. I need to get a wallet or something instead of my purse, its very bulky. Plus I've been carrying a sewing kit, various little things, and never once needed them. I'd rather not have a sore shoulder and worry about where I leave my purse just to carry stuff around "just in case". I had a wallet in high school, guys have just wallets, and so I'm going to go back to one. Eventually. Plus my poor purse is dirty and I feel bad. I need to take it to a leather cleaner.

So that's my first couple of days of work so far. /wave