With our weeklong August bike ride approaching ever-nearer, Bugman and I need to get some time in the saddle.
So, last Sunday, we decided to head out on the road, despite the fact that it was drizzling. (And despite the fact that I was developing a cold. Interestingly, my running-faucet nose completely shut off when we were out on the road. I never needed the hankie I stuffed in Bugman’s back pocket. Was it the fresh air??)
As we walked the bike into the street in front of the house, a man driving the opposite direction (I think he said he was from Melbeta? Or was it Minatare??) stopped his car next to us to chat about the bike.
“What’s it made out of?”
I guess when you have a geeky-cool bike, it’s expected that you are a bike geek and know all the specs. (For the record, it is “Reynolds 631 air-hardened steel zonally-butted tubing.”)
“How far are you guys going?”
“Oh, maybe 50 miles.”
He looked a bit dubious.
After the driver pulled away, we were passed by a cyclist in a tie and purple shirt.
“Heading out?” he called.
I wonder if he was dubious, too.
I had looked up the radar before suggesting our route that morning. Based on the way the clouds were developing, I figured we might get a little wet on occasion but could probably avoid the worst of the weather by heading west. I figured if we went west on Highway 92 and north at Lyman to Henry, we could take Highway 26 back and go through more towns on the way home, where there would be shelter if we needed it.
We headed out and got a few blocks away before I realized I forgot my cycling gloves. After nearly forgetting my helmet. *sigh*
Just as we pulled into the driveway again, there was a crack of thunder.
Do we really want to go out?
But I got all my bike stuff on, and I really want to ride!
I looked at the radar again. It looked like it would be OK if we headed west.
So we did.
And we got wet.
It was pretty miserable for a few westbound miles there. My shell jacket was nearly soaked through, and it was darned windy (~30mph). I didn’t mind it so much, but Bugman seems to have a lower tolerance for recreational discomfort than I do, and I felt guilty for dragging him out into the elements. (C’mon, hon – we are HARDCORE!)
Before we hit the hill up to the Mitchell turnoff, I was reconsidering.
We paused to consume some sport beans and consult the maps and radar again.
“What if we cut it short and turn north to Morrill?” I suggested.
Bugman was game for my crazy scheme. (That’s what I love about him – he usually is.)
We continued on through wind and occasional rain. It was lovely to see the countryside so green, with hints of blue flax along the road. We were serenaded by meadowlark after meadowlark.
We were also spotted by several friends along our route – got a few honks and hollers and a Facebook comment: “Just passed you and Jeff on that tandem for the second time today! Saw you on 92 at about 10 am too! In the rain!”
And now, for the photo ‘splanation:
It was a good ride. 38.64 miles, no sore bum. (Thank you, new cycle shorts, talc, and lots of standing.)
PS – the shoulder on Highway 26 eastbound out of Mitchell stinks. BBBBUUUUMMMMPPPYYYYY!
Copyright 2013 by Katie Bradshaw