The first pitch seemed easy, even with my lack of crack climbing technique,...this being one of my first efforts away from the face climbs of the East.
Tractor..."Welcome to the West Coast!"...I think to myself, after a 100 plus feet of a picture perfect hand sized fracture.
Slings and runners get arranged according to my preference,....a preference I haven't had enough experience to acquire.
Tractor..."Climbing,...on your mammy if I might add."
Belayer...."Climb on,...since I'm done with yours."
The beatiful line I have spoke of turns into an unprotected water groove,..very little to hold on to.
Quick smears on nubs where a crack should be leads to 5 Tennies slowly but surely sliding off the minuscule nipples of rock...polished by millions of years of water runoff,...not one crystal of granite having any sharpness left to it.
I stand on two nubs, grasping whatever I can with the least amount of energy possible, constantly rearranging my feet.
I begin to look down,....both sides and directly underneath of me.
Belayer...."What are doing?"
Tractor..."Lookin' for a place to land.....What are you doin'?"
Belayer..."Movin' off the anchor a bit so you don't fall on me."
Belayer..."Just keep going."
Tractor..."It's my party and I'll cry if I want too."
Belayer...."Can you just hold on a little longer so I can get out of the way?'
So I'm riding home from work,....30 mph gusts directly from the west, perpendicular to the bike. I adjust by angling the bike into it but buses pass by, blocking the wind momentarily, causing me to drift dangerously close to them,....but after they pass,...another burst of sidewinds.
I try to keep from being blown off the side of the road, placing my windward knee slightly into the gusts,...an old motorcycle trick.
I wonder if drivers from behind notice my effort to control the bike, whipping towards and away from the shoulderless gutter. and every vehicle that passed by.
I wonder,... if they could see me angling the bike into the wind, could they also see the direction my eyes were pointing and wonder "What the hell is he looking at???"
Well,...I was looking for a place to land! Head first into that Extra Value Meal.