According to Adam, my oldest son, I have a tendency to get involved in circumstances that almost, but not quite, leave me in serious harm. He said this after I told him about my latest such event and he is right. I do often come awful close to getting seriously hurt.
This past week I fell from painting the second floor soffits of our home. The section I was painting was above our clotheslines so I needed to place the ladder a significantly shallower angle (see the drawing above for an idea of what I was doing). It felt safe when I was going up the ladder, but once I reached the top, and it was too late, I realized it wasn’t safe. When I started to fall I quickly decided it was best to stay with the ladder all the way down, so that it would slow my fall, but that plan changed when the ladder hit the clothesline pole and flipped me off the ladder. Thus I fell 10′ or so into the loving arms of the clotheslines. The clotheslines caught me and saved me hitting the group from 18′ above the ground. Of course, once they stopped me from hitting the ground, they quickly decided to realize me and let me tumble the remaining distance to the ground.
While it left some interesting marks on my back, the reality is the accident could have resulted in MUCH greater harm than a sore and bruised back. Instead of being really hurt I ended up with a fun little story of the time I was almost seriously hurt. I kind of like that.
Today I wasn’t quite as close to serious harm. While the single track mountain biking trail at Standing Rocks Park isn’t my favorite single track trail around, it is the closest. I am very thankful to have a close place to ride my bike. One of the things I like about the trail is that I always see a fair number of deer when I am riding there. In fact, sometimes I see those deer pretty close up and personal, because they are standing on the trail when I whip around a corner. I haven’t hit one yet, but I have literally scared the crap out of one before. Literally. Today I got a little closer than normal to actually hitting one of the deer. I went around one of the tighter corners at Standing Rock and scared a deer that was so close that it kicked dirt into my face. That was kind of fun. I don’t really want to hit a deer while I am riding my mountain bike because 1) that could really hurt me and the deer, and 2) it could really hurt my bike and I don’t want that to happen.