Sunday, February 16, 2014

Trans Iowa: Ten Years Of Tales #42

In mid-November, the idea of Trans Iowa was hatched. The year was 2004. In the ten years since then there have been many stories and memories. These posts will tell of the most prominent ones to my mind. Maybe I'll even spill the beans on some things you never knew....

Easter Sunday and riders coming in to finish T.I.v7
 It was over. Trans Iowa V7 was done, but I had a "Dirt Rag" story to write, sponsors to thank, and some emotionally charged situations going on that seemed to put the endurance factor of Trans Iowa v7 on much longer than I imagined. There was the tension between David and I, my buddy MG was ticked off, and I had just about reached my limits in terms of being able to take any more. There was only one thing that fueled my desire to do another Trans Iowa- that was my complete and utter determination to put on a flawless Trans Iowa. Before the event was even done, I had silently vowed to myself that I would take Trans Iowa on and dominate the logistical and promotional parts of the event and show how it really could be done. I knew it could be way better. But there were things that would need to be taken care of. Difficult situations lurked in the future.

In the short term, I had a tremendous outpouring of support from the riders in the event for the most part. That really helped a lot. Secondly, and I cannot remember exactly how it went down, but some of the struggles that David had been having were coming to light and I had a better feel for why things went awry on his end before the event.

Shaking an exhausted Charlie Farrow's hand.
Here are some things I wrote concerning my feelings after T.I.V7 on the blog back then;

" know, most folks just have no idea how it almost all came unraveled. I won't go into that here. Just know that this Trans Iowa was as stressful as T.I.V3 was, and from my perspective, the event is considered one of the most difficult things I have gone through in a long time.
To have it go as well as it did is great, but I am not celebrating. I'm just glad it is over...........I am tired and emotionally drained"

Later in the Summer I received an e-mail from David that said "....I quit". It really didn't say why, but I found out a lot more about his situation that Summer. He had been working 15 plus hour days for weeks on end in the winter, (which explained why I had not heard from him), and he was majorly stressed out due to cutbacks in his department. Trans Iowa was probably not real high on his list of concerns. Then he lost his job, or quit, or something, but in the end he got a job with a geology/mining concern and moved himself and eventually his whole family to the island of Fiji!

I just wish that back then he could have shared his struggles and let me take the load, but he didn't, and then it didn't matter anymore after that June e-mail. I was on my own, and I was already making new plans to get a Trans Iowa V8 going. In the meantime, MG and I made amends, and he actually made plans to volunteer for a checkpoint for V8. I had a couple of friends throw in their hats to help out if needed. So with my determination, and some encouragement from others, a new version of the event was planned.

There would be a complete recon before Winter. There would be a review of a final draft of the cue sheets by someone else other than myself, and I would get someone to actually drive by my cues a month or so out from the event to make sure the cues made sense. Finally, I would drive the first 100 miles the day before the event to ensure there would be no last minute snafus again. It was a tall order, but I was going to do it this way or I was going to cancel doing the event. Time would tell how it would all work out.

Next: The recon and planning takes shape for a V8.

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