So this weekend, whole family went to upstate NY to a friends cabin for a weekend retreat from civilization. Little did I know that this trip could be disastrous.
My Friend has 2 ATV’s and I’ve ridden both of his ATV’s in the past, so I was pretty confident that I would be able to control. The one he calls the “big one” is the one that I rode almost caused me and my daughter to end up in the hospital (or worse).
My family (wife and Kids) and my sister-in-law were supposed to meet up at my friend’s cabin, but due to traffic they turned back and went back home.. Not good. So since my friend Jimmy’s Cabin had no cell signal nor was his landline operational, I volunteered to drive with my daughter a few miles up the road to get a signal on my cell phone. My intention was to call my sister-in-law in Queens and to tell her to back on the road and get up to the cabin, as we had activities planned.
Of course as we know all good intentions can sometimes be fraught with errors in judgement.
As my daughter and I took off up the road going about 30 mph, my baseball cap flew off. Me, in my infinite wisdom (or lack of), decided to make a U-Turn to get the cap (now lying on the road).
As I turned the ATV to make the U-turn, I lost control and instead of braking, I accelarated into a tree (tree suffered no damage). Instinctively I stuck out my right hand, so my 10 year old daughter would not fly over the front.. I took most of the blunt force against the front of the ATV and of course the ATV was a wreck.. Destroyed the front end, radiator and flat..
I somehow flagged someone down and they took us back to the cabin so we could get Jimmy to survey how to get this huge ATV back to his cabin. Somehow Jimmy managed to bring the ATV back to his cabin (don’t know how he did it but he did it) .
I suffered bruising on my right leg and stomach and fortunately my daughter came out unscathed. She was just shaken up. Yet when I reflect back, I’m certain I had an angel on my shoulder that afternoon. Consider this: If I would have missed the tree by a few feet to the righ, there was steep down slope into a ditch/stream. I don’t want to think what the outcome would have been there.
I sit here and reflect on my luck, because hindsight is always 20 – 20. If only I had decided to stop the ATV on the side of the road and WALK back to get the cap, none of this would have happened. Better yet, no baseball cap is worth the stupid actions that I did.
Rest of Saturday/Sunday, I spent taking Advil to for the pain and icing down my bruises. I guess I was more embarassed than injured. Yet today, I’m still hobbling and still very sore from this mis-adventure.
Next day, I knew I had to get on the ATV to get over the shock/fear. I was shaking when I went on the other ATV that Jimmy had, but I had to fight the fear and get back on the ride. Fortunately, I stayed off road (most of the time) and was able to successfully navigate the smaller ATV.
So with the rowing adventure/mishap last week and the ATV mishap this week I’m 2 for 2 on successive weekend outings during the summer of 2009. I think the lesson to be learned here is to just stay away from the great outdoors for the time being.
One lesson that I do want to share is this: If it looks hard, it probably is. Make sure you are properly trained before you get on any ATV and above all use common sense instead of being lazy.
Next weekend is the annual Mid-Summer Masala at Six Flags in Jackson NJ.. Yes I know, stay away from anything that might throw me off.. I think I’ll stick to the Merry-Go-Round or the Ferris Wheel.