Saturday, March 13, 2010

Lost in Translation

"Oh, no, it's not a flat ride", Martha said while we chatted at the start of her south end jaunt, promoted as "mostly flat with a couple of easy hills". I watched as her hand snaked upward in the air, imitating the grade and length of one of the climbs. "We'll wait for you...", she encouraged. The route description had been translated in a game of telephone where "strenuous" was replaced with "easy", hmmm.

It seemed as though most of the group were surprised by the presence of serious hills: Arnie was on a fixed-gear bike, Ron and Lyly were on their tandem and Tony had brought his 11 year-old daughter along (the last two turned back after Fort Dent and were spared).

The ride started out flat and moderate-paced, a comfortable start to a Saturday morning. We were even treated to a police escort through a very short traffic light. Then we found ourselves climbing up and out of the Kent valley. And up some more, and around a bend. Several of us stopped for "photo-opps" (a nice way to say we were gasping for breath). The steepest and longest climb of the day was out of the way, but there were plenty more hills (but with views, too). I think we all felt stronger and fitter by the time we reached Burien. And we were hungry!

Off to lunch in White Center at the Salvadorean Bakery where we had sandwiches, stewed chicken, yucca root, pupusas, fried plantains and porridge. That hit the spot. On the return, we opted for the "quick and dirty" route on Delridge Way, due to the storm clouds from the west. For the first time in 20 years, I finally got to see the West Seattle bridge open. We were merely christened by a few drops of rain before getting back to Tully's and our cars and to a few beers at Smarty Pants down the road.

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