Got home Tuesday shortly after 11 pm, after another long day of court in the morning and the evening meeting of the board of supervisors in Floyd County.
Crawled into bed after midnight after downloading photos from the meeting and selecting two to send via email.
Did not wake up until shortly after 7:30 am Wednesday — two and a half hours later than the 5:00 am wake-ups that have been part of my life for more than 70 years.
Yep, I’m getting old. My upper arms and shoulders ached for two days following 130+ miles of motorcycle riding Sunday. I used to write 300 miles or more in a day without a whimper. Managed more than 1,200 miles in 24 hours in 2011 as part of what used to be called “Million Miles Mondays” rides for the Harley Owners Group.
Now, a hundred miles wipes me out.
Granted, the 136 mile trek included steep winding roads like Virgina Rte. 8 down Woolwine Mountain and Rte. 49 in Patrick and Franklin Counties and I was riding a three-wheeled Can Am Spyder that has two wheels in the front and one in the back. On the Can Am, you have to steer a lot more in the twisties instead of leaning.
Still, I have taken tougher rides that didn’t leave me moaning and groaning but most of them came at a younger age and before my encounter with a cow while riding my Harley left me laying near death on U.S. 221.
At Food Lion this week, I man approached me as I was getting into my car.
“May I ask if you have a prosthetic?” I was parked in a handicapped spot and have the valid license plate to do so.
“No,” I said. “Why do you ask.”
“I’m sorry but you walk like you might have one.”
He’s right. I walked now in a gait that is far less steady than before the accident in 2012 that required the orthopedic surgeon assigned to put my broken bones back together to insert a lot of hardware to hold everything together. He had thought of removing my right leg below my knee but my wife told him “forget it.”
The injuries have slowed my walk and other movements. So has age.
But what also leaves me dragging are the Tuesdays that include long hours on a hard bench in the Circuit Courtroom of the county courthouse and the more hours in the non padded seats in the supervisors meeting room at the county administration building.
Wednesday became the fourth-straight day I have overslept. Obviously, changes in my body — driven by age and injuries — have altered my internal clock. I have to adjust. Gym workouts must become afternoon activities, web page updates done before going to bed — all part of the adjustments.
What about slowing down?
Not an option. News continues. I have to work. I’ve been employed full-time since I was 15. It’s part of my emotional makeup and needs.
If I don’t work, I will dry up and blow away.
It might kill me, but I will die a happy man.