Tuesday, May 25, 2010

...riding in the wind

This past Sunday was the annual Scott's to Scott's ride. I have no pictures to share this year because...it really wasn't a picture-taking kind of day.

Since I was the only not-so-fast person to show up, I spent a lot of time riding solo. Lots of time to think. (This blog was written in my head about ten different ways by the end of the day.) I thought about the weather this spring--how cold, wet, and windy it's been. How I obsessively check the weather forecast days before a big ride, then stare out the window the morning of, before deciding. Ride? Or not? It kills me to whimp out, only to hear later "it really wasn't too bad!"

That would not have been said about Sunday's ride. The best part was flying down a hill {after a loooong climb} at 47 mph. After that...plain old hard work.

The wind really wasn't too bad on the way over, and it really wasn't too bad on the long slow climb back out of the hole that Kennewick sits in. But it was REALLY bad up on top. The gusts were so strong that I didn't dare take my hands off the bars even to get a drink. Sexy snot bubbles were flying out of my nose--and there was not a thing I could do about it. (I know, TMI. Good thing I was alone, right?)

Even though the weather was horrid, there's something satisfying about finishing a hard ride. When I got back to the shop Scott asked, "Who brought you in?" What?? "These two legs did!"

(Then I went home and collapsed.)

Sunday, May 16, 2010

...weekend visitors

A co-worker/friend asked if I'd dog-sit for the weekend. Nothing was on the calendar, so sure, I'd be happy to help. Meet Mufasa. The coolest little dog I've ever hung out with. I'd like to clone him!

Nate called and asked, "Mama, are you going to be home this weekend?" Yep, I sure am. So he and Andrea came for a visit.

It was a delightful weekend of sunshine, laughter, music, hanging out on the patio, sharing a meal with the neighbors, and a friendly little dog for company. Throw in a bike ride this morning while my house guests slept in, and a good book on the couch after they'd gone--an almost perfect weekend. Life is good!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

...Mothers Day

As child number four in a family of seven, there aren't too many pictures of just me with mom.

As child number one of our brood, there are probably even less of Arlene and mom. In fact, this may be the one and only!

And here's one of the three of us, possibly even on Mothers Day (although more likely it was Easter). Mom was pregnant with our brother Tim, and his birthday is the 18th of this month. Mom made our matching dresses.

Now if I could just find a photo of the three of us girls with mom...

...the first century

All week long I've been checking the weather reports, anxiously waiting to see what would be in store for us on the Inland Empire Century Ride. Rain and wind had been the norm for most of the week, but the forecast was for light wind and no precipitation come the weekend. On Thursday the winds ceased to howl. My spirits perked up. Friday was pretty nice--until bedtime. I lay in bed listening to the rain pour down, wondering if the weatherman really knew what he was talking about. Early Saturday morning I peeked out the window. No rain. {Feeling hopeful...} I put my glasses on and peered out again. The leaves on the tree were NOT moving. Yippeee! We ride!

I met up with my friends Kathie and Bob at the starting point in Richland. It was brisk out at 7:00 a.m. and we had a debate about wearing our jackets or not. It was a little breezy, but the sun was shining. Would it warm up? Would I regret not having my jacket? I opted for arm and knee warmers and left the jacket behind. (The less one has to cram into jersey pockets, the better.)

The first 25 miles were easy-- smooth cement trails along the river. The biggest challenge was the constant need to holler, "On your left!" as we passed walkers, joggers, and slow moving cyclists. After that we headed out of town and started to climb.

Eight miles of steady climbing up through a canyon. Thankfully, the wind did not blow one little bit, as it did the last time Kathie and Bob rode it. It was even quite warm so I took my arm warmers off once we reached the top. And soon stopped to put them back on again, for the wind was blowing up on the plateau.

After all our climbing we were treated to an awesome 6% downgrade into Prosser. I was cautious since it was so very steep and I'd never been on the road before, but I did get up to 38 mph and was laughing like a maniac all the way down.

Kathie and I made a new friend at the Prosser reststop, and with promises to return again, we left him behind for the final leg of the ride.

And that's when the wind decided to blow. REALLY blow. If a SAG wagon had come along I would have gladly taken a lift into town. At one point I had so much dirt in my eyes and under my contacts that I couldn't see. It's a wonder I didn't crash! But we slogged along and finally limped back into the park. We did it. woo. yay us. We were so exhausted by that point that any post-ride jubilation was loooong gone.
But today, after a restful night's sleep I can whole-heartedly say it was a good ride, with good friends, and there will be many more to come. Let's ride!

Sunday, May 2, 2010

...a blast from the past

I recently scanned some more old pictures and came across this one from the spring of '91 or '92.

I spent our entire tax refund on wheels for us that year. Nate and I got new bikes and Katie got the trailer. Katie was at an age that she could have learned to ride a bike, but she wouldn't have been able to keep up with Nate and me, and she had long outgrown the baby seat on the back of my old bike. Such good memories of loading up the back of the trailer with a picnic and heading out for several hours of riding. Katie took along the dog, her baby dolls, snacks, and a blanket. It was a sad day when she was too long-legged to sit in it comfortably any more. Over the years coworkers have asked to buy the trailer from me, but I selfishly hung on to it. When Arlene became a grandma I loaned it to her for our sweet Jadyn, and when she's outgrown it it will come back to me for my (future) grandkids.

Jadyn, summer '09, enjoying a nap just like Katie used to do!