I've mentioned before that sometimes, OK, nearly every time, in the flurry of activity that is getting ready for a bike ride, or worse, a trip involving the bikes, that I am prone to forgetting something. Remarkably, my absentmindedness has never resulted in driving into the garage with bikes still on the roof, which will now undoubtedly happen this very afternoon. Anyway, try as I might, I don't always remember everything I should when I'm packing.
Last week's trip to Utah was no exception. Rachel was flying from Salt Lake to New York Thursday afternoon, so we had to leave early and did not have the luxury of spending a few minutes going through the (still mental) checklist, making sure things were done properly.
About 100 miles into the drive, my four-year-0ld indicated that he needed to go to the bathroom. Incidentally, he makes a verbal announcement, including details of the nature of his urge, every time he needs to go, whether we are in the car or not, even though he's perfectly capable of taking care of business himself when stopping the vehicle at an appropriate place is not a necessity.
In this situation "appropriate place" was defined as "South side of I-84 Eastbound, circa mile marker 150" because there were no towns, villages, rest areas, or even ranch exits within the three minutes or so we had between announcement and denouement. So I stopped the car, helped him out and into the weeds, where he of course bared his bottom (rather than just unzipping his fly) and provided the thirsty weeds with moisture and nutrients.
On the way back into the car, I checked the bikes on the hitch-mounted rack to make sure everything was still secure. The bikes were mounted securely to the rack. But upon inspecting the rack, I noticed that although it was inserted into the receiver as it should have been, the pin that should have been securing it there was evidently still in the garage at home. Oops.
Fortunately, the rack stayed put, preventing my bikes from becoming several thousand dollars worth of aluminum and carbon fiber shards scattered across the freeway. At the next town I stopped at an auto parts store, and for three dollars and eighty four cents was able to purchase peace of mind that I was somehow unable to find during the miles since the bathroom break.