Sunday, September 16, 2012

Playing hooky

I'm fresh out of goals for the year.

Yesterday I blew off an official ride. A brevet that I might have signed up for in January. The start was in Davis (120 miles from home) and the date crept up fast. Didn't know how to verify my name was on the list. Didn't even try.

In January the idea was to set up some rides in the fall, for motivation. Didn't occur to me how easy it would be to blow off a meaningless milestone.

After a lazy morning Danny asked did I want to go for a bike ride! My first thought was the tandem. I'd rather stoke, making no decisions and pushing my little heart out. Compared with a single bike, physically a lot harder and mentally a lot easier. It would be great to just follow...

The tandem option was quickly nixed. A combo of back pain and insufficient fitness. :-(

Clearly time to pull the Waterford out of the garage and clean it.

Wow. These past few weeks the Waterford has been a trusty servant on dirt. It might still be carrying bits of Oregon soil... The frame is dirty enough, but the drivetrain is ugly with a black mixture of lube and fine sand. Chain links aren't supposed to have those little clumps in them. Get out the blue paper towels, cleaning products, Q-Tips, and new lube.

An hour and a half later with Danny somewhere out on a ride, my lower back is screaming. Many black, mutilated Q-Tips lie on the ground. The drivetrain looks (almost) new again...

For back relief I suit up, fill a water bottle, and head out of the neighborhood. Somewhere. It turns out to be a classic Loop ride, with Stonebrook and Moody for hills, 35 miles. Not a brevet but not junk miles either.

Some advantages of starting a ride at 4:15pm:

  • On Sunday the roads are almost deserted
  • No pressure to go over the hill to the coast
  • Temperature perfect
  • No need for sunscreen

On the road come thoughts of other rides to do. Mt. Hamilton in October with Allan. Fall is beautiful in Big Basin. Touring north to Humboldt County, maybe with camping gear.

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