Monday, November 9, 2009

Group Ride

What about a Saturday 9:00 am ride? You can’t possibly have to work then.

Well, as it turns out, Jörg was right. I didn’t have to work then. I did have to play for a wedding that afternoon, but that was another story, and I was sure I could squeeze in a ride in the morning. (My Lovely Lovely was less certain, mind you, since there were things around the house that needed to be done, but we worked that one out all right. She is, after all, lovely lovely.)

There was a nice group there: Jörg, Bobby, Dr. Bob and Bob, Karen, Lisa, Tom, Mike, Keith and Rick. (Bob, not to be confused with either Dr. Bob or Bobby) and Keith took off to do a mountain bike ride. They planned to swing by Wal-Mart to pick up some other riders (wow, they really do have everything you need at Wal-Mart) but the rest of us planned to hit the road. No one in living memory could recall the last time that Rick, Dr. Bob and I had all been on a ride together.

It was what we call a “social ride”. That is, the pace was easy so everybody could just enjoy the morning and chat. I had a great time. (I don’t know about anybody else. After all, I got to chat with them, but they were reduced to having to chat with me.) We took a route that I hadn’t been on for awhile (mind you, lately it feels like I haven’t been on any route for awhile) but which I remembered well. The temperature was in the mid sixties and the wind was certainly present but not brutal, and I got a chance to catch up with some people. (Socially speaking, that is. Even I didn’t have to catch up physically, since the pace was too gentle for anyone to get dropped.)

The weather prediction had been for no rain, and it was almost wrong. We could see the clouds ahead of us as we came in, and the sky spat a little bit, but nothing major.

As we were riding in over the last mile, I recalled a lesson I had once heard someone given on when it was inappropriate to sprint.

If someone tells you they aren’t going to spring, you shouldn’t necessarily believe it. That might merely be a tactic. But, if you’re attentive, you can tell when a (nonverbal) truce has been called and there won’t be a sprint. It is quite gauche to sprint at such times.

This day, of course, there was no question of a sprint. It simply wasn’t that kind of a ride. So, I waited until we were all of three feet from the finish line and, just as pure silliness, nipped ahead. Mind you, I had to get up to nearly 16 miles an hour to do that. Whew. (This was a really social ride. We came in with an average pace of about 14.3 mph.)

The whole ride was great. I wish you could have been there.

See you on the road.

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