Velogal's Blog

Sunday, September 10, 2006

This is the asphalt parking lot behind the HP Pavilion in San Jose, converted to a motocross dirt park. The parking for (I don't know how many) thousand cars for concerts and for Sharks games looks awesome for this Toyota Challenge Dew Action Sports Tour. The crowd was incredible last night. Each day there are more and more extreme sports fans.

Right across the street is Inn Vision, a shelter for homeless folks. They seem to have been comverted to action sports spectators. Of course, they must be blasted out with the sound of the announcers and music. The sound is deafening in the park, and obviously reverberates for blocks around.

As I walked to the area yesterday, I saw a bunch of guys sitting on the front fence of a run-down house across the street, watching the huge screen that projected the action to the grandstands. There was just a small area between the stands that the guys could watch through - all they could see was the fence, the back of the grandstands and a peek at the screen, which is as large as one in a drive-in movie theater. They were all admiring (I hope) my camera equipment. "Oh, she works for NBC", I heard some guy say... I just said, "How's it going, guys," and kept walking....

I park several blocks away in the Employee Parking area, cause it's freebie. I walked there after the concert on Friday night. It's not a great part of town, and totally deserted that late at night. About two blocks away from my car, I heard footsteps behind me. I turned around to face whoever it was, and it turned out to be an EMT guy. He told me he was glad for the company, because HE would never walk to that lot by himself this late at night. Said that Security usually escorts employees. Wouldn't it be weird, I thought, if I had traveled all over at the Tour de France for five years by myself, and then get mugged in my own hometown?

I was telling the guys at about it, and they said, "Jeeze, what would you do?". I said that I'd point my camera at the mugger and say, "Stop or I'll shoot..."

The competitors are awesome athletes, and just do unbelievable stuff on the BMX and Motocross bikes. I suspect that they are in the same boat, or should I say bike carrier, as most roadies - under paid and under appreciated for the great athletes that they are...

Today is the last day of the event - one more day of roasting in the sun and carrying around a huge amount of equipment... Come to think of it, I'm underpaid, too...


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