gearing up for the cirque du cyclisme
I went out and did a slow, relatively short ride the Sunday after Tour de Abbeville. I was still suffering, and it was kinda hot. Fortunately for me, young Bradley's rear tire developed a slow leak, and we turned back and rolled at a sedate pace into Hodges. 24.4 miles was the total on a hot afternoon.
I didn't ride Tuesday or Wednesday - Ana and I went to the Charleston area for our anniversary. We had a great time that included hearing possibly the worst acoustic folkie of all time, finding a great bike shop (Black Dog Cycles) and discovering an amazing Greek Restaurant (Zeus Seafood and Grill in Mount Pleasant). We filled the coolers up at Whole Foods and drove home Wednesday.
I made up for it Thursday on the Callaham Challenge. I had dashed out into the garage, running late, and found Belle's back tire was totally flat. No time for repairs, so I pulled Stripe down off the rack, pumped up his tires, dropped bottles into cages and headed out. I wound up riding with Campbell, Bradley, Al and a new guy, Tommy Davis.
Bradley and I chatted for a while as we rode down Stevenson. The worst of the pea gravel was gone, so long as you stayed away from the shoulders. Bradley was using the opening stage of the ride as a warm up, figuring he'd hop onto the train when the really fast guys caught up to us. They overtook us (as usual) right around the intersection with Old Abbeville-Hodges Road. As folks passed me, they said hello or patted me on the back, and I said hi to Josh, Bob Chambers, Tom, and a bunch of other folks. Steven Shenal slowed down off the back and stopped to have a European moment as it were, whizzing into the gutter while still astride the bike. I could see the pack slow down, waiting for him.
Campbell and Tommy rolled up.
"So is this like waiting for the yellow jersey taking a nature break?" I asked.
"Naw," Campbell said. "They just like picking on him."
"Oh, okay," I said.
Jim crested the hill and we decided to do the full route, instead of the short one. We took Stevenson across 203 to its terminus on 20, then burned on down to 185 and back towards Hodges. We made better time down the length of Dixie Drive and back into town, winding up with 36.87 miles for the day.
Saturday's club ride had a small turnout - me, Jim and Bradley. The weather looked threatening, so we cut it short, riding from the fountain down the Canadian Mist Highway to Pembroke, then left onto Scotch Cross. We took the John Lake loop down Lowry Road to 248, passing the Star Fort and working our way back in the way we came out. I wound up with 25.5 miles.
Sunday was a bigger bunch - Jim, Bradley, Norm, Tommy, Andrew Douglas and Andrew Evans showed up. The pace never got too frenetic, and we worked out a long loop that took us out Noble Road and back around onto 201. We took a detour onto Cold Springs Road, the dead end side, and felt like we were in another state entirely. Young Andrew Evans commented that it looked like Pennsylvania - I've never been there, I couldn't say. It can say it was beautiful out there.
We rolled back onto 20, then cut over onto Central Shiloh Road. By this point, we had broken into different groups, and I wound up riding with Jim and Tommy. We took the long way back, eventually coming out via Pickens Creek Road. I had 33 miles even for the day.
I didn't ride today, other than commuting - too busy getting stuff in order for the Cirque du Cyclisme this year. Unfortunately, I'll probably miss getting to do the Fixed-Gear Friday ride, but Saturday's ride looks promising. I'm looking forward to seeing Jeff Groman's movie, and Sunday Ana and I will be manning a table showing her digital paintings of bike parts. I haven't been to the Cirque since 2001, and this should be a blast.