Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Napa to Davis Death Riide

After my late night and long day in the Napa heat on Sunday, I made the crucial mistake of not asking Sandy and Rich what their plans were for Monday. I was just too tired and I couldn't summon the energy to ask them if I could regroup at their house on Monday. I mean Sandy had already given up her whole Sunday afternoon to attend to the needs of my Napa City Hall arrival. And then figured out a bullet proof fix with Rich for my rack until late late Sunday nite, so I figured I'd give it a day before I asked.

Well 6 AM came and I took a chance. Instead of leaving I got to work on this blog and on uploading pictures from my iPhone to the photo galleries I have set up at our Mayor's Ride Schedule at Bikeroute.com. I got so carried away that it was 10AM before I let Sandy know what I had in mind. And instead of troubling her to find other Napa lodging as she had offered. I decided to take John Young up on his offer to use his escort services whenever I was ready.

Rich graciously rode me the 6 or 7 miles to meet John Young on his Easy Racer recumbent, near Napa junior college. By the time John and I had detoured back into town to get me energy bars and water for the ride to Davis, it was close to noon. And hot. It would get up to 98 degrees in some parts of busy Jamison Canyon ahead. Ugh.............

This was a connection I long had dreaded. And yet it wasn't as bad as I had envisioned. Until we hit Winters. From there the miles ahead leave one with no real goal in sight. Now that's what I call genuine ugh............

And yet for all the years I've sat in a car on the freeways that look out on the Napa to Davis stretch and have felt sorry for the people who live out there, yesterday it was the cars I felt sorry for. Up until agriculture then tamed these lands in Winters, this stretch was all fairly pretty country.

After Rich  biked me to the edge of town, where I met John, a delicious tail wind  blew us out of Napa. But for the most part, the shoulder was adequate, and with the exception of busy Hwy 12, passing cars were not a problem.

And John was awesome. On arguably the world's fastest production bike, an Easy Racer recumbent, he waited for me whenever the road curved or turned and I could not see him. A 64-year-old grandfather of three, he is leaving for his own TransCon ride on June 23. So for him, this was hardly even a training ride. Just a helping hand from a gentle man, with a great laugh who is a retired school teacher.

And yet since he does this ride all the time, he before had not been interested in any of the short cuts that would have made the ride shorter. And yet there again ultra marathon cyclist Paul Guttenberg, from whose computer I am writing this in Davis, did say that that not many people, even in Davis, know some of the short cuts that exist.

It was 7:30 PM when Paul finally met up with us and rode us the rest of the way into town. John and I said good bye near B&L Bike Shop where he rode off to his daughter's house. Paul, an airline pilot, who knows distance cycling took me to his house where he fed me bowl after bowl of miso soup and other plentiful food and drink. I mean this guy knows how hungry the road can make you.

It wasn't long ago that he rode across the US. His TransCon was a 4000 mile journey that he did for his pilot and flight attendant friends who died in the 911 disaster. He did so in an astonishing 30 days!! As well, he regularly rides Davis to LA in 3 days time. That's 600 miles one way!!

This guy is an animal and I feel like he has taken me under his wing to help me regroup for the many miles ahead!!

THX 4 all of U!!

btw:I rode over 70 miles today and yet I cannot be any more exact. I am also too wasted to load the roads I used to our maps at bikeroute.com/brdc . Anyone out there with a Garmin Edge they are not using that I can borrow for a few mon

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