Monday, October 19, 2009
Cowboy Mike Rides Again
When the horse throws ya, you're supposed to get right back on. Well, I've been bucking that rule for three years now.
My fixed gear threw my butt to the asphalt in 2006. Completely my fault. I stepped out of a pedal on a short but steep hill. Went right over the handlebars. Broke a finger and a rib and developed a big fat hematoma on my right knee.
I found myself blaming the bike, not the messenger. My fixie found itself parked in a dark corner of my basement, under the stairs. For three years.
But enough is enough. This weekend, I installed a better set of pedals, climbed back on and rode Black Creek 200K permanent with 12 other riders.
I'm happy to report a fine time was had by all. It was a joyous reunion of bike and rider. The day started with cool temps, the low 40s, and warmed to the high 50s by the afternoon under a mostly cloudy sky, but with sunshine and a slight headwind on the return trip. Our baker's dozen hung together for most of the day, but stretched out a bit as we neared the barn.
Once again, we timed this permanent, a fundraiser for the Friends of the Mountain to Sea Trail, to coincide with Black Creek's Fall Festival. Cowboy Bob and Aflac the duck, two highlights from last year, were no-shows. A newcomer to this year's festival was Brewer's organic sausage booth. We set upon this like flies on a rib roast. The sausages were served up on a hot dog bun, topped with chili, mustard, onions and green peppers. Yes, that's a dicey gastronomical adventure at the halfway mark of any bike ride, and it apparently knocked a couple miles an hour off Byron's pace.
Special thanks to Tom B from South Carolina for making the trip up to ride with us, to Branson for the chocolate "pain" and to Jerry for the coffee, for the long pulls from Joel, to the company of relative newcomer John O, to Fearless Leader Al, who is chasing an R-12. Also congratulations to NC's newest RAAM-qualified riders, Lynn and JoAnn, who were both with us on Saturday.
A donation of $200 has been made to Friends of Mountain to Sea Trail in the name of NCBC/NC Randonneurs.