Not too long ago I told my dad about the SPOT locator. He loves gadgets even more than I do, and so I thought he’d really like the SPOT. My mom was listening, and as soon as she found out what the SPOT was capable of, she insisted I allow her to buy me one.
“But mom, I don’t think I really need one.”
“That doesn’t matter. You are getting one, and you are carrying it with you on every ride.”
“Well let me research them a little more.”
“Fine. But I am getting you one.”
And so she did. I have had it for a few weeks, and I really like it. It adds a little security, but also makes it pretty fun for people at home to check the website and see my progress. As I have talked to other people with a SPOT it became clear that the driving force behind the little devices are our parents. Jill wrote today in fact that;
“Geoff’s mom bought him the SPOT receiver and threatened him with future panic if he didn’t carry it along the Continental Divide. Now, all he has to do is push a button and his exact latitude and longitude point is broadcast on his very own tracking site.”
I know from talking to Chris and Essam that their parents were also very interested in their children having this handy tracking device. I guess parent’s will never stop worrying, no matter how grown up we get. The idea of us traipsing all over the mountains, without support, and often times alone must be nerve racking at best.
My parents happened to be at a meeting in Park City the day of the ’07 E12. That was the day I ended up in the local clinic with an IV stuck in my arm. I think my mom tried to talk me into a different hobby, something that did not involve pushing the limits of mind and body. Something to do with board games.
The SPOT leaderboard for this year’s Tour Divide ought to add a lot of excitement to the race. The ability to see in real time where each rider is and how fast they are progressing will bring the race to life I think. Add in the audio check-ins and we at home will be treated to an unprecedented level of coverage.
And while that will bring entertainment to us, and comfort to loved ones at home, I have to wonder… does it tarnish the remote solitude of that route? Maybe. But then, maybe not.