Cycling Along The Way...

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Silver City, NM, United States
Riders of the wheel. Racers, Roadies, Mountain bikers, Touring cyclists, Commuters, and others. Diamond frames, recumbents, trikes, and more. Sharing a web of connections often misunderstood or unappreciated by those who don't ride. Herewith, my attempt to share some of the more rational thoughts that flit around inside my head while bicycling, knocking back a brew or three, or just thinking about life. Reviews of bicycles, gear, touring, and more, plus some unsolicited posts about people, politics, and philosophy. Other things, too. Me: retired, gave up my TV in 1988, avid cyclist, several cross country tours completed with more to come. Your thoughts?

Sunday, November 21, 2010

2010 El Tour de Tucson

Yikes...it's been a LONG time since I put anything on this blog.  After getting in to Glens Falls, NY, on Sept. 20th, I stayed with my sister, Sally, who owns/lives in our family home in Glens Falls.  Eileen flew to Glens Falls, NY, on Oct. 1st, 2010, to spend 10 days back East with me...actually 8 days.  There were two travel days, which don't do anything for you except make you tired.  While in Glens Falls, NY, I attended my 45th high school reunion, which was interesting.  My peers from high school days were in varying degrees of health/fitness.  All of them thought that my riding my bicycle 3050 miles across the United States to get to Glens Falls was crazy ... and all of them insisted that they could "never do that".  Unfortunate comments from them because they could if they wanted to but they've chosen other ways of being in this universe...and those ways don't include bicycling to the degree that I do it.  I was happy to see my classmates.  There were all these memories from the past, yet the time we were in school together seems like another life, another time, another place that no longer exists except in our minds.

After the reunion weekend, Eileen and I went to Burlington, VT, and spent a night at the same B&B we stayed at during our honeymoon.  I have always like Burlington, VT, and, if I had stayed back East, I would have considered moving there.  Oct. 9th was our anniversary and we spent it at Davidson Brothers Restaurant and Brewpub, where we got married in 1999.  We had about 12 people with us at Davidson Brothers.  Good food, good beer, good company.  Pete and Michele from Long Island drove up to attend this gathering with us.  We sure enjoyed seeing them.

I got to drink great beer at Davidson Brothers, great hotdogs at Dirty John's (aka The New Way Lunch), great apple cider donuts, great cheesecake from the Nuns of New Skete and to see the Fall colors of Upstate NY.  In addition to this, I got to see family and friends that we had not seen in quite a few years.  My brother, Bill, and his S.O., Trudy, flew to Glens Falls from Longmont, CO, and my nephew, John David, and his S.O., Nancy, came up from Catonsville, MD.  Eileen and I had a good time with all of them.

We flew back to Albuquerque from Albany, NY, on Oct. 10th.  Picked up the car at the airport parking where Eileen had left it and headed for Silver City.  I was finally back in NM and my hometown.  Weather here is so good...it was much better than what we had left in Glens Falls.  It was turning to winter there.  No thanks.  After getting back to NM, I started to think about the El Tour de Tucson, which was coming up Nov. 20th.  I had made arrangements for Eleen and I to stay at Pat Spark's Mon Ami bed and breakfast (http://www.monamibandb.com/) in Tucson, AZ.  It's a place that we stay at whenever we're in Tucson.  The B&B is really well situated in Tucson in between Speedway and Broadway just West of Wilmot.  The central location makes it easy to get to any other part of Tucson.  And Pat is a great person and host.  She's always welcoming and cooks some of the best breakfast food. Period.  On this trip, Pat cooked dinner for 5 of us...the night before the El Tour.  There was Santiago, Augustine, Alisa, Eileen and me.  Dinner was fabulous.  As were the appetizers and desserts.  Good thing I was riding 109 miles the next day.

I was up by 0530 on Nov. 20th to go ride the El Tour.  Eileen got up at the last minute to take me to the starting point.  The morning was cool, but not cold...better than last year.  The day was supposed to be good weather, but the winds were going to be kicking up in the afternoon.  Up to 30mph gusts.  Sucked.  I did the 110 miles in 7hrs25min.  Not bad for a geezer.  Santiago and Augustine were trying for 6hrs but Santiago started getting cramps in his quads and hamstring muscles after 30 miles and that slowed their riding ... but they did the ride in 6hrs29min.  A respectable time.  Of course, they're in their 30's.  The dogs.

We ate dinner at Vivace's on Saturday night.  Incredible food.  Every time we're there.  Oh, immediately after the ride, I called Eileen and she met me at Che's Bar on 4th Avenue so I could take my after riding medicine.  Beer.  Vitamin B, hydration, pain reliever.  An all inclusive medicinal drink that makes me feel good.  Two beers later, Eileen and I were headed back to the B&B to soak in the hot tub.  Mucho good.  Then Vivace's, then the hot tub again.  Felt great the next morning.  Legs were not sore.  I was a bit tired, but not sore.

So, now we're  back in Silver City.  Next ride is to the Cliff Dwellings and back  Just have to figure out when.  Then I'll buy one of the Gila Hike & Bike cycling jerseys that says, "Gila Proven" on it.  I will have proven myself, however, Jack, one of the owners of the bike shop, told me at the start of the El Tour, while we were waiting for the ride to start, that, if I had the money, he'd sell me one of those jerseys whether I had bicycled to the Cliff dwellings or not.  Too funny.

Ok, enough for now.  Oh, I bought a new, electric smoker and it arrived last week.  This year, I'm smoking the turkey.   Hope it turns out as good as I hope it will.  Happy Thanksgiving to ALL.  Remember....there are 34 days until Christmas.  Get shopping!   Jingle Bells by Dean Martin  Let It Snow by Dean Martin  Jingle Bell Rock by Bobby Helms  Santa Claus Is Coming To Town by Bruce Springsteen