Well I had a heck of a day if you didn't already know. I had completely forgotten that I had a pre-arranged family weekend in Chicago (including a visit to the Blue Man Group) when I decided to do my league on Sunday. SO when I was reminded by my lovely and understanding wife 2 weeks ago we would be leaving on Friday and coming back on Sunday morning I freaked out. I had not discussed anyone covering for me for this week and didn't feel it was right to throw someone under the bus unprepared because of my own lapse in memory. I told my wife I would have to come back Saturday night or early Sunday morning. I decided that parking our car in Skokie and riding the Yellow Line (Commuter train) from Skokie to the Red Line at Howard (end of the line) would be my best option for getting home quickly. With the Packer game on last night I decided not to try and come back on Saturday so I figured out the schedule. The first train from Howard (end of the red line) to Skokie is supposed to be 6:15 and it is a 9 minute ride, which would mean I should make it to Dretzka about 8:15 am after a quick stop at home to change and pick up my discs, money, vouchers etc. We stayed right downtown so we would need to be on the red line by 5:30 am to ensure we made it to the first Yellow line train. The walk was about 15 minutes from our hotel so I would need to leave by 5:15 am to get on the red line in time.
If you know me well you know I cannot stand being late, in fact I am almost always 15-30 minutes early. SO I woke up at about 4:25, showered and got my wife up and ready to go and we walked out of the hotel at 4:55am. We arrived at the red line about 5:10 and got on the train and arrived at the transfer station to the yellow line at 5:38. We had 37 minutes to wait for the yellow line so my plan was already ahead of schedule. We huddled together on the platform and eventually found one of those heat lamps to stand under. We went down at 6:10 to wait for the yellow line. 6:15 came, 6:20 came, 6:30, and at about 6:45 there was an announcement over the load speaker saying Yellow line passengers should hop on the #97 bus to Skokie. The problem here is that the first bus didn't leave until 7:04, so we had yet another 19 minute wait putting us in Skokie at 7:24 (as opposed to the planned 6:24). On top of that 1 hour late arrival, my car was covered with 1/8" of ice and it did was frozen so tight I had to use all of my windshield washer fluid to get it melted enough to get the ice scraper to accomplish anything. When we finally were ready to pull out . . . that supposedly put me at Dretzka at 9:15 but I didn't have any change, the scorecards, pencils, discs, or my disc golf bag, and I wasn't dressed to play because I planned a quick stop at home for all of this.
I called my original emergency plan Scott Slauson, but with the snow and ice he was busy plowing and salting so he could not get to Dretzka to help out. I then sent a text to Shaun Kirchner to let him know of the situation since he was commenting on my facebook page a few minutes after I made my first post at 4:30am. I love it when people are as excited about disc golf as I am. I also sent a message to Matt Atherton (since he has run leagues before and helps out all the time) to let him know what was going on but I didn't hear back from him until about 8:20. When he got back to me, he said he had a few scorecards and was willing to check people in and get some groups going right away. Pheww . . . emergency resolved . . . now how quickly can I get there?
I drove an average of 15 miles per hour over the speed limit the entire trip from Skokie to my house. I had two close encounters coming up on the back side of highway patrol or police, but caught it quick enough to not draw attention to myself. I was able to shave off 15 minutes of the drive time because when we left Skokie it said I would be at my house about 9:10, and I arrived at 8:55. I got turned around pretty quickly and didn't forget anything. :)
If you noticed, I actually did arrive at Dretzka at 9:15, but I was able to stop at home and do all of those things I needed to do.
I did the best I actually could to make it when I did although I could have hopped in the cab at the bus station and gotten to Skokie earlier, but when I asked him how much it was, the cab driver asked, "How much do you want to pay?" I turned around waved and said thank you. I hate it when cab drivers try to pull that sort of thing. I apologize for being late, because I truly cannot stand it when people make me wait. It will happen from time to time, but I hope to keep those instances few and far between. Thanks again for your patience, and extra special thanks to Matt Atherton for helping me out. I took him out for a Cousin's sub afterwards and had a great chat about leagues, some new ideas, and just disc golf in general. Thanks to Shaun Kirchner for being available early in the AM.
As I have said in multiple places, the Sunday Snow Thrower league will be in good hands while I travel south for warmer weather and my annual month long disc golf road-trip. Mike Ellery has Valley View next week, Scott Slauson has Estabrook on 1/27, and Matt Atherton has Dretzka Winter on 2/3. We will be off on 2/10 as the schedule states because of the Big Freeze. I will return to Milwaukee and be at the league on 2/17 at Valley View. I will have all of the funny money vouchers you have earned and hopefully some goodies for some more contests from the road-trip.
Keep up the attendance, I appreciate having a nice group of people every week. I am surprised at the numbers so far because we are averaging more people per week than the fall glow league. I certainly did not expect that, but am happy that many people are enjoying the league.
See you when I return, but I will continue to update the scores and payouts and standing each week while I am on the road. You can follow along on The Disc Golf Experience page on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/DiscGolfX