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October 2008 Archives


What a roller coaster of a month! We had originally planned, or rather felt obligated, to go to the LSPR rally in Michigan. We had erroneously calculated that we needed to attend to defend our 2008 Rally America Eastern Regional Championship title.

After another competitor pointed out that we didn't need to, we were a bit deflated. We went from not really wanting to take a week away from work/family to attend to being pumped to go on another rally adventure! I spent several straight days doing car prep and loading and modding the tow rig only to get the call to stand down. Always a hard thing to change the rally prep transmission from drive to park.

Regardless, it appears that the 2008 Rally America Eastern Regional Overall and Open Championship is ours. In 2007, we took the Open Championship, but missed out on the overall. We also ended 2007 second in the RA Regional Rally Championship after a penalty at 100AW Rally took us out.

Needless to say, we'll be looking forward to attending 100AW in Missouri again at the end of February 2009.

So, how do we celebrate the championship? With another rally of course! :-) This rally will be outside the US and happen before the end of the year. Why so cryptic?! Well, we want it to be a surprise for our friends and fans, so are making sure all the T's are crossed and I's are dotted before announcing the entry.

T-4 is in good shape, but waiting for some new rear end bushings and the replacement radiator fan to go in. Other than that, she's ready to roll. A trip to Canada next week to pick up some rally tires and we should be set for the next couple of rallies.

We spent some time last week adding a workbench to the venerable Sprinter tow rig and he's now more capable than ever. We have one other shelving project planned, but then the rig should be just about done(who am I kidding? It's never done!).

Leaves are falling here in Maine. The maples at Triple Caution Farm are hanging on, but turning yellow and red. The old ash trees dropped their leaves about three weeks ago. It seems to me that the old trees just seem to be tired when fall rolls around and their leaves just drop in a couple of days. Can't say as I blame them. When I'm over 100, my leaves will drop! ;-)

In other news, there was serious discussion of LDR being part of a two car national effort for 2009. Alas, many factors conspired against that becoming a reality, so we'll continue to do what we do best-rally! I have to admit, the team was flattered to even be on a list of considered candidates, and hopefully a similar opportunity will present itself in the future.

Cheers! John


Sorry for the delay in posting. Although in between, "real," jobs, I've been busy with all the fall outdoor projects we have to do in Maine in preparation for the soon-to-come snow.

I've also been hitting the gym a bit more and added a new challenge...Karate.

So, the gym is three days a week; Body Combat class, RPM class and an hour with the trainer. Karate is two nights a week.

Tonight was the first full contact kumite night that we had in the dojo and as a white belt, I knew that it would be difficult, but as crazy as it sounds, I wanted to know what it's like to get hit. In the regular class, there is Kumite monthly, but this extra session is for folks that want to go a bit harder, with strikes to the head allowed.

Only knowing some basic moves, and those not as polished as I want them to be, I was pretty scared. I'm not as young as I used to be and I wondered how the recent work at the gym would help me.

Kicks and fists were coming at me. All I knew is that I had to try and remember some basics and block what I could and take the hits that I couldn't. I also figured I needed to be aggressive and not wait to get whacked. This worked pretty well with all of us giving and taking it pretty equally. There didn't seem to be enough air in the dojo to breathe after the second pairing.

Then Sensei Apsega paired up with me. I knew I was going to get hit. And hit I was. After a good blow to my face, Sensei said, "That's what you wanted to get out of the class, right?" I told him it was worth every single penny-and it was. Of course, that wasn't the last hit. There were more and a good kick to the inside of the left knee. I wanted to give up, my lungs were on fire and I just kept telling myself to keep my hands up. I listened to myself some of the time. ;-)

We continued to pair up until we just didn't have anything left. It was an amazing educational and physical experience. I've been doing cardio, but I obviously need to do more! I'm going to try and hit the gym tomorrow.

For those interested in Karate, you can visit the website of our Dojo here in Maine.

A big thank you to my son, John for his help with instruction recently. He has three years in the dojo and his dedication and attention to detail never cease to amaze me and make me proud.

Alright everyone, enough reading about me getting whacked. Get out there, move and get fit! :-)

Cheers! John