Almost a great weekend. It started off hideously, with me having to work late on Friday night and then go in on Saturday to get a model room ready to go for the hotel operator’s approval walk through. The place was going nuts all day, with a thousand different stupid little things to be pressed into too little time with too few of the materials being delivered in time to make things go. Short version is that we got it done and I was home by four. Not bad, but who really wants to go into work on Labor Day weekend, especially when it’s three weekends in a row you’ve had to work? More on this later.
Sunday morning was beautiful and I was out on the road a little after nine. Did a backwards hybrid of the NCVC Espresso Ride and the 10am ride. Pace was certainly nothing special, but at this point I’m so far away from being ready to do any real efforts that any time on the bike is of huge benefit. Using a compact crank is pretty effective in my current situation. I’ve got a 12-25 cassette on the wheel I was using, which offers some pretty low gears on the big ring. I know it’s Fred to cross chain in a big/big. Whatever. You do it too.
I’ve never considered that I’m the pathlete sort or really ever noticed any concern on my part about passing people or being passed. That was until everyone on the damn road passed me. Not really, but there was a noticeable uptick in the number of times I heard “on your left” on Sunday. It’s just going to have to be something I live with for a while.
Sunday night was a haze of beer, which left me in great shape for Monday’s special Labor Day Edition Espresso Ride. The ride was notable because it was to be my first group ride (i.e. more people than a few friends to whom I could just say “slow down I’m getting cooked back here”) since getting back on the bike, and also because one of our more experienced team members is going to help me out with my training. I’m really looking forward to this.
The ride itself started off with a huge group, bigger than I’d ever seen for a team ride. There were also like 25 people from other teams or no team at all grouped in there. A couple of the guys from no team scared the living piss out of me and I was happy when most of them went away. I got good and tucked in among people I know and trust and stayed away from any randoms. The pace was pretty hot, which was predictable since people are still on their summer form to one degree or another, but this wasn’t doing me any favors. It was only through grit and treachery that I was able to stay on for the whole ride. A lot of people were pretty impressed that I was able to hang in for the whole thing, but I didn’t think it was that big a deal. It was certainly a bit depressing to have to work as hard as I did to hang on, but that’s something I’m just going to have to deal with.
So back to the first topic, one ‘random’ on our ride was actually one of my favorite guys in MABRA, and also happens to have a job similar to mine. Interestingly, he and I are both getting the itch to move along to other things. The job we do is fairly rewarding from a financial standpoint but certainly not outstanding, and there’s always a gap between what you put into it and what you get out of it. You wind up working pretty insane hours, none of which are remote working. The first thing that happens is you go to the site. I know a lot of people spend a ton of time on their crackberries and stuff, staying in touch with the office, but it’s one thing to be doing that on the deck of a pool and another to have to saddle up your boots and get to a job site. There’s also a degree of intellectual myopia that I think we’re both a little done with. It’s a big world with a lot of stuff going on and too often we are concerned about toilet handles and electrical transformers to have anything to do with the world around us.
It would also be nice to be clean more often. Who knows, maybe we will both become staples of the mark of the true “Life of Reilly” situation – the Noon Ride. HAH! Wouldn’t that be sweet?