Sunday, June 1, 2008

Two Tickets to Paradise

When is a ride not just a ride, but an experience? First, take a group of strong cyclists who are focused on their goals. Mix them with the best that Mother Nature can throw at them: fog, wind, rain, mist and many other forms of precipitation that the English language does not yet have words for, as well as a steady decrease in temperature. Tilt the road uphill and put some switchbacks, waterfalls, raging rivers covered with snow and passing cars nearby.

The following things are bound to happen:

The group will get split up- there is basically only one road to the top but everyone has their own route to bathrooms, "scenic" vistas and rest stops.

Because of the above, someone in the front group will be "chasing" someone in the main pack, thinking she is ahead and therefore increasing her overall speed of ascent.

There will be some nudity in inappropriate places when riders feel too warm climbing or when they prepare for descending.

A fireplace will act on cyclists the same way that a bugzapper attracts mosquitos- they will be drawn in by the warmth and may never want to leave.

On the eventual descent (maybe the Lodge kicked you out?), riders will burn through entire brake pads while not only trying to control their speed but trying to keep their hands warm by moving them, as well

Any source of heat from that point to the car is considered fair game to warm up the body- hand dryers in bathrooms, heat register in a store, maybe car exhaust?

A big gear is suddenly preferable for its ability to generate heat as you struggle to crank over the pedals because your legs just feel like foot-hangers and not like the strong lever-like muscle that you thought they were on the climb up.

The blackberry pie that really didn't do it for you last year tastes absolutely delicious this time around!

You will wake up with a sore upper back and realize it's from all the shivering you did the day before.

Riders will be grateful to you for providing them with the experience as they mutter words like "bonding" and "suffering" in the same sentence.

Thanks for joining in on the experience but let's go on a ride again soon.

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