I didn’t know that Tempe was such a hot bed for triathlons until three weeks after I started working at ASU.
(Trust me, I know it now.)
Back in 2013, volleyball hosted UCLA, just my fourth home match as a ‘real, live, full-time-job having SID’.
So I left the house I was living in at the time two hours before first serve so, you know, I’d have enough time to run to Starbucks to get some breakfast (chocolate croissant and a green tea lemonade, aka my old standby when I was in college).
Also because I’m from one of those families where ‘on time’ means ’20 to 30 minutes early’ (it made for a lot of really awkward times at parties when I was a kid, but that’s a #tbt for another day).
I was zooming down the freeway—a warm pastry in a bag on my lap—when I saw the first sign about road restrictions at the offramp at Rural/Scottsdale.
Weird, but I kept driving, which was my first mistake.
But like I said, I’ve only been in town for three weeks, so it’s not like I knew my way around when I wasn’t being helped by my GPS.
Side note for those of you not familiar with the Phoenix area: getting to ASU’s campus and Wells Fargo Arena is SUPER easy from the 202, since the Rural/Scottsdale exit is RIGHT THERE.
But when you can’t cross Rio Salado, it’s kind of a problem.
I crossed the bridge over Tempe Town Lake.
I somehow ended up back on the other side of it.
I tried to cross again.
I finally managed to get ON to Rio Salado.
I got STUCK on Rio Salado because I couldn’t make a left turn.
Somehow, I ended up at the zoo in PHOENIX before I manage to turn around.
At this point, I was driving while stress eating my now-cold pastry. I got chocolate on my pants. It was just as un-fun as you think.
Somewhere way west of campus, I manage to get back onto the 202.
I did NOT get off on Rural/Scottsdale.
I did keep going, and eventually took the 101 all the way south of campus, and somehow managed to both backtrack my way back to the arena.
And yes, I got to the game on time.
UCLA, on the other hand, missed some of its serve-pass time because they couldn’t get to campus either.
I was super glad it wasn’t just me. Hell, I don’t even know how we managed to get an announced attendance of 990 (more on my thoughts on attendance at college sporting events another day).
This #ThrowbackThursday post comes in honor of the Ironman Triathlon coming up this Sunday.
I will not be going anywhere south of my apartment, because I know better.