Sunday, August 14, 2011
Going nowhere fast
That was the end result of yesterday beach landing attempt. Allow me to elaborate. I spent the week preparing my gear and daydreaming about a short -+ 300mile/480km day trip to the Atlantic (Rebohoth Beach, DE).
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Finally, Saturday arrived and Scully and I were ready to ride the tarmac. We set out at around 8:30am feeling rested and excited. The forecast called for a cloudy day with a 40 % chance of rain around 4pm. And here is where the ride goes downhill, sort of. As soon as we reached the Bay Bridge near Annapolis, MD. traffic was crawling so slow it made me think of that scene in Office Space where the older fellow with a walker is going faster than the cars.
Anyway, after paying my $2.50 for the privilege of riding an elevated highway at a blazing 10mph we reached the other side. Finally, after endless miles with cages around me, I decided to pull over near Hillsboro MD. for a roadside snack, hoping traffic would improve, sadly it did not. I turned around, and headed home.
By now is close to 1pm, the sky is looking mighty grey and rather constipated. I know that no matter how fast I ride, today I am the “statue” and the Sky is the “bird”. It’s shower time! The clouds opened up with such explosiveness it was pointless to continue. I pulled over onto the side of the highway. I only have my riding jacket on, too late to try to put on my riding pants. This is a serious summer shower; cars and semis are rolling by and splashing Scully. Not much I could do but watch and stay off the shoulder myself. After awhile the rain let up and I hopped back on the saddle, my first time riding in the rain, on the highway! Nice planning. I finally made it home 150 miles/240km short of my goal, saturated but safe.
This was supposed to be a training run in preparation for an upcoming tour, and it served its purpose. Main lesson: always bring all your rain gear, and spring for waterproof gloves! Amazingly, the bike handled the slick road rather well. Sure I had to slow down and take it easy but the bike felt sure-footed and stable. After 440miles/704km I am still adjusting to the new riding position. Like any aspiring endurance athlete, I must train, before my body can withstand hundreds of miles on the saddle.
There are a few motor biking axioms. First, when your start riding your friends will tell you that riding motorbikes is dangerous, valid point. Second, from the rider’s perspective, riders will tell you that riding is Fun. And, yes there are close calls, rainy days, and aching, sore muscles at the end of a long ride. So why do we get up the next day so anxious to reach our next destination and called it fun? This, I’m unable to explain; you will have to go out and ride and try it for yourself.