A friend of mine whom you all know as @roadchickie aka DragonLady has a mile stone birthday. It so happens that her dad, who’s never been to Los Angeles before celebrates his very own, just a few days apart. The apple does not fall far from the tree, as evidenced by dad’s love for cycling and they both share a beautiful southern drawl. Its almost like listening to someone singing.
Anyway, I digress. Mary sent out a ride request to her friends to meet up with them at Neptun’s Nest, some 35 miles north of Santa Monica. Her dad wanted to ride PCH, and that far north it is much safer and the scenery is awesome. Roll time was set for 8:30. The ride was organized in a way which allowed different options for riders of varying abilities. Some would take this as the start of a century ride, while others would take an easy 25/30 mile loop. I decided to ride from home to meet the group, ride with them for about 10 miles and then turn around, because I had early afternoon commitments, but that way I should get a good 80 mile workout in. I have not been on the bike all week, and really missed it.
I got a late start (not because I got up late) just didn’t pay attention to time at it slipped away. Realizing I was behind schedule I mounted without my water bottles. The ride north turned out to be my little personal time trial, because I really didn’t want to miss them. I stopped at a gas station to buy some water bottles which would fit into the cages and started heading into the wind, the whole 33 miles. I was wearing our Southern California Rider’s kit, so I was easily recognized by many in our group as they were driving to the meeting point, sitting in warm cars, slurping coffee while I was working hard to beat the clock.
I made it and was greeted by a sizable group, but no @roadchickie and Dad? While riding I never pay attention to my phone and missed the call. In short, @roadchickie and dad were riding the beach yesterday on rented bikes. Dad, can’t really turn his head while riding any longer, therefor he always carries his mirrors with a quick mount. When they returned the bikes, yesterday, they did so forgetting the mirrors. Riding on PCH, even on the less traveled portion, requires you to check your six all the time. Riding without a mirror is not an option. All of this was discovered while they were driving to the meeting point. Eventually they arrived, and although they didn’t get to ride, we were able to wish them happy birthday and at least meet dad. What a likable guy!
It struck me that not only was it worthwhile to ride up there to meet him and @roadchickie, but there were so many others I was able to catch up with. Tom, who had to leave us on our last ride because his dad was admitted to the hospital. Thankfully all good now. Jason – who is a very soon to be new dad. Mark – who is sporting a brand new custom LOOK. I should have not picked up that bike, ever since I did that my ride feels like it weighs as much as a MTB in comparison to his, what a beautiful bike. Others I haven’t seen since my crash, catching up with them was much fun.
Ultimately the faster boys decided to go for a century, another group would make a scenic loop to Port Hueneme, @raodchickie and dad would drive to Malibu State Park and they would hike to show dad where M.A.S.H. was filmed and I would circle back to Los Angeles, happy to get in a nice long ride, and feeling really good to have met up with this motley crew of characters. Ultimately, life is all about friends.
P.S.: I would be very surprised if there wouldn’t be a blog entry @roadchickie’s blog in the very near future – you should check it out.