Thursday, June 24, 2010

On and On

I've sort of come to the conclusion that not too many people are actually looking at this little adventure I started. The Home may not be much read but not to be to discouraged, merely tardy in keeping up, I continue to fire off the occasional outburst. Time, as always is a factor. Summer is upon us and with the increase in outdoor doings, time at the laptop is somewhat limited. Like it wasn't most of the time during the winter, right? So where to begin to catch up...

I guess the best thing is to just jump in and go...School is officially over for the summer for my two offspring. They are now free to pursue more important things like a girl for the older one and who knows what for the younger one. The testing is over and the long-winded Middle School Graduation is under the bridge so now we can get on with July and August. Whew.

The Tour de Cure we're riding in is coming up Saturday. Doc and I are psyched for the 100 miles (psyched mentally...physically may be another story). It's turned into kind of a strange road to get to this thing. I was riding pretty steadily on my old 1400 Trek to train for my first century. I'd been seeking and destroying steep climbs and putting on mileage but the old aluminum warrior suddenly developed a nasty front-end shimmy at almost any speed above about 25. Very unpleasant when you suddenly can't steer at high speeds and the front wheel shakes so much you feel like you're going over the bars. Further investigation found a very much weakened fork and three cracks in the frame right around the bottom bracket. One on each chain stay and one in the seat post. Not good. The tech at my local bike shop suggested earliest possible retirement to avoid bodily harm should the cracks suddenly turn into breaks and the whole frame turn to mush at high velocity.
I couldn't really justify a new bike and the stuff on Craigslist and Ebay was too much hassle so I was resigned to taking it easy and trying to stretch the 1400 through the Tour and worry about upgrading later. My wife was less than enthusiastic about that plan but what can you do?

I wound up working on Father's Day and didn't make it home until late but I did find a really good steak on the barbie and a card from my brood waiting when I finally made it in the driveway. Opening the envelope, a printout of bike specs and a photo fell out along with the card. I guess she really was afraid I'd get killed on the old one because there were also instructions on when I could get fitted for and take delivery of a shiny new Trek 2.1 with all the trimmings. Sometimes, you just don't know what to say or how to say it if you could figure it out. I'm still pretty much speechless. I don't know how she did it and she won't say but the bike is here and I've already put sixty miles on it. It's an incredible, light, stable and equipped with more gears than I have fingers and toes. The thing sails down the road like nothing I've ever ridden. I thought the 1400 was a rocket but this is a whole different world. How she knew and got it so right, I'll never understand. I wouldn't have bought that bike for myself in a hundred years but that girl of mine got it together and set me up. It's a Father's Day gift that will be with me for many years. My only biking wish now is to keep riding until this Trek is old and to have her right there with me while I wear it out.

The Tour is coming up and I'm in pretty good shape to have a go at it. I just never figured I'd be doing it on a new ride but that weird shimmy and some cracked aluminum suddenly changed just about everything. I'll see you all after.

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