Monday, January 26, 2015

Carroll County

Last Saturday night the frere invited me out to his neck of the woods for a ride with himself and our good friend Howie. It's actually been a while since John and I rode together, and it's been even longer since I've seen Howie, so yeah, it sounded like a great idea.

I'd done about 40 earlier that day and, surprisingly, felt pretty good. It seemed like this terrible weather we've been having hadn't taken too much out of me. I was eager to see if it was all in my head though. You know, when you ride by yourself, you always seem fast.

Sunday morning, I got up, grabbed some breakfast at the Shell station and made my way to Douglasville. As it turned out, we had to wait a minute or two for my brother's dryer to cooperate, but before long we were ready to spin over to Howie's place.

Or so we thought.

It was at that point that I made The Discovery.

The Discovery:


Noooooo! My phone decided to focus on the seat tube, but the rim is where the action is. In particular, the crack in the rim is where the action is. Noooooo!

For the past few rides, my brakes had been pulsing a little, but when I looked at the rim, it looked normal. I didn't look at it after Saturday's ride though. Maybe I should have.

Actually it wasn't a problem though. Howie had a spare wheel and I was able to swap cassettes and use it. I had to swap cassettes because I'm still running some old stone age 9-speed. Yes. That's right. 9-speed. I like to get every last mile out of my equipment. That includes ancient components, and apparently, cracked rims.

After a quick bit of street hooking we were on our way.

John Howie

Howie had some 50-ish mile route that wound its way all around Carroll County. The roads were super, super quiet. We got passed once on the road that Howie lives on, and then that was it, for hours. In fact, we might have been passed twice all day.

The route was great. I felt good.

There were tons of dirt roads out that way too. I'll have to get back out there and see where they all go. We even managed to ride one of them for a few miles.

S. Old New York Trail

I think it was called South Old New York Trail.

Heh. "Old New York" is funny to me.

Somewhere out there it was chicken country. Chicken farms everywhere. This one guy had a giant statue of a rooster out front of his place.


No innuendo intended there, I'm sure. Heh, heh.

I began to struggle at about mile 35 and then cratered completely not long after.

Ehh, maybe not totally crater. I was fine as long as we weren't climbing very hard, but I just didn't have it when we were. I'd recover right away as soon as it leveled out a bit though. I don't know. It was weird. Maybe I was just still a little worn from the day before.

All right, so now I need to fix my road bike. Kind-of hard to do when you're broke but I'm sure something will work out.

I've been wishing for better weather for a while. Seems a little less important now though.

This whole situation reminds of when I first got a job in high school. I wanted a job so I could make the money to pay for the direct costs of skateboarding, like new boards and bearings and such, and so I could pay for gas and insurance, so I could drive to awesome places to skate. But the work I had to do to make enough money to be able to pay for everything consumed most of the time I had available to skate and eventually I lost fitness and skills to the point that there was little value in being able to skate those awesome places.

I seem to be in that boat these days. Can't afford to play without putting in so much work that it obviates the play. Way back, I climbed the ladder, made more money, eventually got a better job with more pay and better hours. It worked out. I'd sure like for it to work out that way again.

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