Every so often I have a dream where I miss the start of a race. It has that same distressed-helpless feeling as that dream most every college student has had: the one where you show up for the final and realize you haven’t been to the class all semester.
In the dream I’m always at the race in time, but for some reason I don’t make it to the start before the field takes off. I think that’s one reason why I’m a bit paranoid warming up, making sure I don’t get too far away. I had an anxious moment at Superweek, where I lost my bearings. But I made it with plenty of time. I was thinking that despite all the anxiety I’ve never missed a start.
My plan was to drive home after Friday’s race in Kenosha since it was already an hour towards home. The week’s heat wave was finally broken … unfortunately by thunderstorms. When I got there, they said the racing was delayed because of lightning.
I debated whether to stay.
I sat in my car and waited to see how late the first race started (we were the second race). I called Tris for a read on the radar. As our start time approached, the first race still hadn’t started. I turned the key and was about to drive away. Then I turned it off. I didn’t want to drive away not having raced, rain or no rain. I waited some more. Finally the rain started to let up. I moved my car and was about to go register.
I saw the pace car go by. They had started. Then realized it was MY race. At some point, while I sat in the car, they had decided to scratch the first race (or move it to a different slot) and start the masters first. I stood there for a moment. There was a junior nearby getting ready for her race, so I had to choke back the F-bomb that was starting to force its way out.
It was one of those moments where you realize that there is absolutely nothing you can do to fix the situation.
So I set out for home, more than a bit PO’d at myself. Finally I reminded myself that I:
a. didn’t get wet
b. didn’t have to wash my bike
c. would make it through the Chicago traffic without any hassles
d. would make it home in time to catch the day’s Tour de France stage
But I still would have preferred to race.