Sunday, 27 September 2009

Back in the Saddle

A heat wave hit the Bay Area this weekend, leaving people reeling in 90 degree temperatures!!! Panicked runs on gourmet ice creameries were reported. Yes, we are soft as Care Bears here in the land of milk and honey.

Sure enough, the "heat," a reasonably tough ride, post-infection weakness, not enough food/water/salt pills, and surging with racers on Skyline left me cramping by the end of the 50 miler. The route - I call it Redwood Pine Happy Bearcat - strings together several East Bay favorites for a decent bit of climbing. Despite the indignity of leaning over my handlebars in pain as an old man toodled by, it felt absolutely spectacular to be back on the bike. I love the sun on the back of my hands, the warm tailwind, and the mocha Freddos from Peet's, which I tried for the first time.

Today, rather than battle the midday heat, I spent the morning doing household chores, including wrapping two cushy layers of handlebar tape on La Roleurette's road bike.* In the words of Spinal Tap's David St. Hubbins:

The bigger the cushion, the sweeter the pushin'.
That's what I said.
The looser the waistband. The deeper the quicksand
Or so I have read.)

La Roleurette wanted to re-christen her long-abandoned bike, so we headed out at 3:45pm to ride up Tunnel together, then I sheared off to do Redwood Pinehurst. Yesterday's effort left my legs a bit wobbly this evening. A gorgeous sunset ride; at the top of Grizzly Peak I found myself in a dreamy snowstorm of floating thistle seeds. I stood there for 10 minutes, trying to catch one in my hand so I could take a photo.

I hadn't eaten since lunch, and didn't take any food on the ride, so I was frantic with hunger by the time I got home. La Roleurette made a brilliant suggestion of a banana milkshake with cocoa powder. But I was still crazy enough by the time we got to the Pacific East Mall Korean restaurant that I ordered an enormous plate of scallion pancakes along with my hot bowl bibimbap. I only got through half of them, but have lunch for tomorrow.

All in all, an excellent weekend back in the saddle.

* Per her request, J-Lou will now be known as "La Roleurette."

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