Friday provided a fitting end to a harrowing week of cycling. I hooked up with Rotsap and LBS-Chad for a lunchtime recreational ride. I haven’t been on a recreational ride in a very long time. The ride ended up reinforcing just how unlucky I’ve been this week…except that, by the end if Friday I realized it had been a really lucky week.
I rode the newly forked race bike to work in anticipation of the possibility of a lunchtime ride. By the 11am start time I was knee deep in work related mayhem and made arrangements for the ride to come by in an hour.
I snuck out the back door and we headed downtown for a quick chat at shores of the city namesake. A short distance later we admired the BOOM banner placed on the long abandoned soon to be razed downtown feed mill. We rode on enjoying the camaraderie that comes with group ride formation on the local trails with trusted biking buddies.
And then disaster struck. I was standing and cranking up a short steep section and my chain snapped. My weight pitched precariously forward and I briefly performed an impromptu nose stand. Fortunately for us Rotsap had part of a Cool Tool™ that we coupled with a wheel skewer to reconnect the chain. And off we rode.
And then disaster struck. I flatted. Fortunately for us Rotsap Evad had 10 year old Park Speed Patches and an Innovations Big Air that was first punctured last August. There was just enough air to continue the ride, and the patch held.
Rotsap departed early and then disaster struck. We hit what passes for urban singletrack in this town and found a fallen tree limb blocking the path. We decided to perform some trail maintenance, and soon both of us got taken for a ride by the limb as it fell into the river. A little sore and a little shook, we continued to the end of the ride.
It wasn’t till the end of the day that I realized just how lucky I had been all week. I had three serious incidents with cars, and two opportunities for injury on Friday’s ride. What made me realize I was lucky? When I got home after meeting all the family related Friday night obligations I put the bike away and found the front tire was completely flat. The patch had held just long enough for me to do what I needed to do.