Thursday, April 21, 2011

The Sunday chinwag.

I found a rare patch of sun this past weekend. And like my dog in our living room, it seemed like a good place to stretch for a while until the next thing happened. That thing, in my case, was waiting for a couple of teammates to join for a Sunday ride.

Rides come in many forms. There are days when my teammates’ faces tell me they’re ready to try and rip the cranks from their bikes. Other days they’re steeling themselves for a multi-hour slog of an endurance ride. This day though, it was clear there was a different agenda. It was obvious from everyone’s faces and lazy body language we were headed for a chinwag.

All three of us did relatively hard rides the day before. So rolling along the bike path heading out of town we waited for our muscles to warm. Yes, the sun was out, but the air was cold. A jogger here, a stroller there. All excuses to keep the intensity low and the speed reasonable.

Rather than the usual warm-up followed by intense efforts and an occasional story during a lull, today was about catching up. We talked about work, about our wives, about life in a down economy. We discussed politics, but Rider 3 wasn’t with us, and it’s just not the same talking about the turkeys without him. So we moved onto tales of racing when we were younger, of hazing new teammates. I shared the crazy story of a mechanic that worked for one of my teams who was frustrated, because his real dream was to be a porn star (seriously).

Rounding the bend into a headwind we started the climb. The speed stayed the same so conversation died down. Another few turns though and we picked up the dialogue, this time comparing notes on Amstel Gold, recent books we’ve read and houses. The road dipped and turned with our conversation.

Finally I looked over my shoulder, gave a nod to the boys and made the right-hand turn onto the road I live on. The others went their own way, two friends out for a final few miles before heading home. A training ride so much like every other.

Something tells me though that at some point in my life, I’ll look back on days like this as anything but mundane.

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