Topic: 40 miles b4 work
8-29-05 I worked 8 hours yesterday. But I also got in a nice ride.
Carving the hill on Timber on my Lemond, I had to make a conscious effort to control my speed and not miss the turn. I was making the loop for the second time, and not sure exactly how I would head home afterwards, just -- as Bobby Darin said -- "bummin' around". But is there a better way to have fun?
Mostly I rode slower.... not pushing fast, but then when I headed up plainfield over the hill, the one that goes to U.S. Rt. 22, I cranked it, powering up the incline past my ex's house with a speed that left my surprised at the bike's handling. The 853 frame is top steel, but an entry level bike, the 'Vada came with heavier components, and remiving the granny gear probably didn't cut much weight. But the frame was unleashed; the entry level parts spec forgotten; I wasn't just some dude on a bike. I was a cyclist. I got to top, having copped a buzz from my leg muscles working past their normal speed, then headed around, back. A glance at my Citizen Titanium dive watch confirmed my fear; it was soon time the go to work. Never fear; I was riding to work. I went home, thru on a fresh shirt and my backpack, then headed out.
I arrived at the office totally psyched and wide awake. My colleague asked me what I had done that day.
"Not much," I said. "Just 40 miles of blacktop".
He looked at me.
I grinned. I forgot I was not talking to another cyclist. I tried explaining that 40 miles wasn't a long distance, really, but he wouldn't believe me.
Yet, at the end of the day, it isn't about the miles, or average speed, or ride time. It's about meaningful moments, tiny obscure achievements for which there are no trophies and podiums. Beating your previous time up that big hill [or getting up the one you couldn't do before], racing the car from the stoplight and winning, racing the bus -- and leaving it in the dust, along with all your worries.
Yeh, I did 40 miles yesterday. But it's impossible to measure the distance my soul traveled. That's why I ride.