Sunday, March 22, 2009
In the fall of 2007, shortly before leaving for the bike tour down the Pacific Coast, I unknowingly opened a new door in my cycling career. Bill Stevenson and Corey Thompson have both recounted the tales of the Randonneur while at work. Occasionally, I would see the well broken in saddles of Rick Blacker and the large handle bar bag of Paul Johnson as they came in to replace another set of tires or yet another chain. Earlier in the summer I found myself on many of the century ride classics such a the Daffodil, 7 Hills and the lesser know OTP (Olympia to Portland). One day while looking for new shoes, Dan Fender turned and said I should join the crew and give Randonneuring a try. The 300k was not far away and in the warm, long daylight months of the summer. I had biked 125 miles, how hard can an extra 55 miles be? Not to mention that the ride started in Olympia, my home town. With no more excuses, I started my first ride on my trusty Bianchi Volpe. The feeling of being on the road all day, following the back roads around scenic Washington with the sun beating down was enough to get me hooked. After returning from my bike tour, all I could think about were bicycles and riding. I got the bug and I got it bad. It was easy to map out my summer of cycling while sitting at computer watching the rain come down. I quickly scribbled dates down for the entire season and started asking questions about why my narrow race saddle hurt so badly and how to eat while riding.