Friday, June 19, 2009

Two Covered Bridges, Multiple Scabs

It's been so long since I've written, I bet you thought I'd given up, eh? O ye of little faith!

The weather has been, again, fairly abysmal. It seems like every time we have an abundance of time, the rain comes with it. Despite this, we have managed to get in some riding. Ok, Alyssa rides just about every day. I'm not quite that good about getting on the bike, but I'm working on it.

Last Saturday morning, we did an almost 13 mile ride up around Thurmont, MD with our friends Whitney & Araminta. Well, Whitney was able to ride. Araminta's bike was not working correctly, so she operated the sag wagon. This mostly involved keeping traffic flowing around us and blasting music to help with motivation. She did a stellar job!

Whitney was responsible for mapping out the route for us and it was a really nice ride. We got to see two of three covered bridges located in Frederick County, the Roddy Creek and the Loy's Station. Even if we hadn't gotten to see the bridges, the ride itself was beautiful.

I surprised myself by really going after one of the hills we encountered. I guess I figured I'd rather get the hill over with than prolong the agony. And I didn't want to lose my steam and fall over. Why would I fall over, you ask?

Because I was wearing these shoes for the first time with my new bike and its clipless pedals. I was a bit apprehensive about wearing cycling shoes because I was convinced I would constantly forget to clip out of the pedals and fall over all the time, but I figured I needed to suck it up and go for it. To my surprise and delight, I found myself enjoying clipping in during our ride. At least until I fell. That falling thing? Not a lot of fun. Alyssa assured me that falling a couple of times is just a rite of passage, so I didn't feel like too much of a loser. I think I did so gloriously and spectacularly, with lots of profanity.

We didn't take a picture of me lying on the ground after the first fall, but I did make sure to take a picture of my banged up hand. You just don't realize how much you bend your hand until it's excruciating to do so. I know it doesn't look like much, but it didn't tickle, that's for sure. The falling itself was a fairly zen moment. Time slowed down and I knew I wasn't going to be able to unclip in time. Once I started tipping, I just resigned myself to it. I knew it was going to hurt, but thought maybe flopping would lessen the impact. I can't say that it did, but the pain of landing on the ground was worse than I imagined it would feel as I contemplated it on my way down.

Then, because I like to enhance my misery, I fell again. This time I really don't know what happened. My left knee was the first part to hit the ground. I made Alyssa take a picture of me lamenting this awful occurrence, but only after she moved my bike from the road. After all, I can get hit by a car, but not my bike.

A week later, I'm mostly healed. I've been picking the scabs on my hands because that's just how I do and the knee is still kinda weird looking, but I'm no worse for the wear. I'm hoping falling will be a rare occurrence, or at least that I don't break anything until after the Challenge.

After we completed our ride, Whitney & Araminta drove us down to the Country Kitchen to eat a delicious breakfast. Alyssa had toast, bacon & eggs and half of my pancakes because she has a tapeworm. Araminta invited us to try some of her Scrapple, as we had never tried it before. I will try just about anything once, so I took a bite. Verdict? Not really my thing. I'll stick to sausage or bacon. Mmm, bacon.

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