Saturday, June 18, 2011

Following the current xc011 group as they head into their final week. It looks like Barbie has resolved her knee issue and will be able to finish the ride. Harry is still being Harry--drinking Bood Lite. never far from "spanners" and living the dream! I mailed his bike carrier earlier this week and hopefully it will reach Boston by next Friday. Fedex guaranteed it would be there.
I rode my first century of the season on Thursday with no significant problems. It starts in Washington IL. and finishes in Champaign at my brothers condo. As usual, replenishing fluids were required for me to get my mojo into equilibrium. As a followup, I did my usual 40 mile ride yesterday to be sure my recovery was complete. I am looking forward to the East Coast ride. But now for the not so good news. Hank e-mailed me and has encountered some physical difficulties. Hopefully, he will recover sufficiently and be able to make the East Coast ride with me. I would have to have to break in another roommate. Hank is one of the good guys! On that note, I wish Barbie and Harry safe riding and favorable winds as they complete the trip to Boston.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Harry with another wild and crazy hat!

Me and Barbie-loved her hat

Me, Darrell, Barbie, Magic Mike and Wild Harry

Busy week. Put about 200 miles on my bike knowing I would not be riding for few days as the Cross Roads group would be in Champaign this week. My plan included riding to Crawsfordsville In. and possibly on to Indy. Harry arrived from London Monday and I picked him up at the airport in Champaign. After dropping off his bike to be assembled, we spent a little time at Hubers to hydrate properly and Harry was dropped off at the hotel to catch up on sleep and recover from jet lag. The next day brother Larry treated us to a BBQ. Harry, ever the carnivore, devoured two well done steaks in addition to vast quantities of food and drink. Larry's other guests delighted in Harry's accent and quaint British colloquialisms (spanners, puncture, shag, etc). On the way back to the hotel, we were required to engage in another "pit stop" at Hubers. (Hey Hubers, you are getting a lot of publicity here!! How about a freebie once in awhile?) Darrell, another 09er, flew in from Knoxville Tenn. He is going to ride from Champaign to Erie. On Wednesday, Barbie flew into Champaign , we picked her up and enjoyed a nice reunion luncheon. That evening, Magic Mike, another 09er who currently lives in Springfield, about 90 miles southwest, joined us and we all headed out to have a nice dinner. The restaurant was an Italian one, Bastias, where those of us who were going to ride tomorrow, (Harry being the exception) carbo loaded on their fine Italian pasta cuisine. Of course Mike had a steak, sent it back as is his usual custom when it does not meet his exacting specifications, and we all enjoyed a fine dining experience. Mike was a tad worried when he first learned that the establishment had real cloth covers on the tables, but I assured him he could tuck it into his shirt and nobody would have complained. I could tell he was greatly relieved to be given this option.
The forecast for Thursday's ride was a possibility of rain and thunderstorms with a westerly wind 5-10 mph. That would have been a fun ride. Ha! Little did the group realize that when a preponderance of 09ers congeal in one place to ride bicycles, the wind will not be gentle and it will be directly into our face!! That, indeed, was the case!!
Awakening at 5:00 a.m. I immediately checked the local weather channel. The good news was that the rain potential was not very high. But, the bad news was that the wind was blowing from the east at 15 mph, gusting to 21 mph. including all points in our biking path to the east. That meant that the 80 mile ride would be into a 15-20 mile ride the entire day. I was looking forward to the challenge. However, without going into detail, family circumstances arose preventing me from joining the riders. I could have ignored the family situation but there would have been a dear price to pay so I wussed out. Never fear, the wind gods will make it up at some point. Thus ended reunion week with the 09ers but I am eagerly following Barbies blog.
On a final note, I saw Tracy and Rick. Both, of course, were part of the support staff for the 09 ride. Rick looked his usual fit self having recently recovered from illness and Tracy looked like she could still ride circles around most of the riders on tour; me especially. It was great seeing all of those people (yea, those people) and I look forward to seeing more this fall on the East Coast ride.