Good Idea?

“You want to ride the trail tonight?” my friend Tina says on Monday morning.

“I suppose we could,” I respond slowly, desperately searching my brain for any possible excuse. Unable to present a valid excuse we make tentative plans for meeting up on the bike trail later.

When I tell my husband of the plans, he is delighted. He rides regularly. Me, not so much. In fact I haven’t ridden for about two years (really, it’s been that long?)

As I am preparing our dinner, he is out in the garage attaching the bike carrier to the car, airing up tires, and gathering helmets and such. My back tire won’t air up. It appears that the valve stem is bent. We can’t locate the spare tubes, so I will have to ride his road bike (he has two bikes). Not a big deal (I think) because his bike is similar to mine. That is not the case I later realize.

Finally, we are off and ready to meet up with Tina. Some adjustments must be made to the seat height before setting off. My husband’s bike has cages on the pedals, I do not like them. They are difficult for me to get my feet into them. His seat is not comfortable. This does not bode well for a fun time for me. I am a little wobbly at first, but I push and pull on the gear levers trying to find a good gear. My husband and Tina ride ahead of me as I try to get comfortable with the bike.

Pedal, pedal, pedal. Sweat begins to drip down my face as the temperature rises. The trail is stifling hot. My butt hurts and I want this misery to end. Pedal, pedal, pedal. We continue on and on. Finally, we stop for a moment.

“How much farther to the end? I ask.

“Probably about another mile,” is the response. My heart drops. I can’t go another mile. Tina and I turn around to begin the journey back. My husband will ride on and catch up with us.

Pedal, pedal, pedal, ring! Tina’s phone rings, “Where are you?” her husband, Matt asks. “Are you getting wet? It’s pouring here.”

Uh-oh! This is not the news I want to hear, because the top of the convertible is down! There were no clouds in the sky or prediction of rain when we left an hour before.

We are not getting rained on at this moment. Five minutes later, there are a few sprinkles hitting us. They feel good on my sizzling hot skin. Ring! It’s Matt again, he’s coming to pick us up. Yes, this is great news to me! My husband has caught up with us and when we told him of the rain he shot off like a rocket.

Matt is my savior! He appears not on a white horse, but in a white truck to pick us up. We head to Tina’s house to collect towels to dry out the car. My husband has made it to the car by the time we arrive with the towels. Fortunately, there wasn’t  anything in the car to get wet (other than the seats and floor mats. We wipe down the insides of the car with the towels.

1/4 inch of water in my door handle

Once we are home, the top of the car is suspended in air to allow not only the top to dry, but also the insides. The next day the car sits in the sun to dry out the interior.

So, was this a good idea? I’ll let you be the judge.

The sky on our return to home. Can you see the isolated rain?

PS: We rode again on Friday evening and Sunday morning. I have my bike back and that makes all the difference in the world! Slowly I am beginning the journey of biking again. I know there will be biking stories in the future.

16 thoughts on “Good Idea?

  1. This was a great slice! Felt like I lived it! I am so glad you are on your own bike now. Keep up the pedel, pedel, pedel! The rescue truck was such a relief for you! I felt the relief too! Can’t wait until the next ride.

  2. The tension you built up here was just right. I am not sure if your story makes me want to urge my husband to get our bikes out of the basement or not, though. I will wait to see what your future biking stories sound like!

  3. Congrats on getting back into biking! 🙂 Like Michelle, I loved your description of your “misery”. And of course — it never fails to rain if you leave the convertible top down!

  4. “My butt hurts and I want this misery to end.” Sorry, but I laughed out loud when I read this. It’s a quote I’ve said many times in my bicycling escapades! As much as I love going for a bike ride, why does it hurt so much? Glad you are trying to enjoy it. Keep pedaling!

  5. Elsie,
    I felt like I was right beside you as you described the scene on the biking trail. I empathized with your butt pain as that is one of the reasons I don’t care for biking all that much. I guess as time passes, the rides will become easier for you as you develop the stamina to move forward and travel greater distances…best of luck as you head off down the trail. Hopefully, you won’t ever get rained on like that again! Sorry for your eyeore experience.

  6. Yikes, it was the seat that got me, I hate that pain. The rescue scene in the white truck really had me laughing. I’m glad that you’ve decided that even after all of that you want to get back into biking…with a great saddle this time. Come to think of it your story did have a ‘western’ feel to it. xo nanc

  7. Oh, Elsie, I felt for you the whole way. What a trooper you are to have even begun, & then the rain coming. Argh-not so good this time, but I’m glad to hear you got back on, with the proper bike, and so on. Your writing is just right!

  8. There was intrigue, suspense and the happy ending of two more bike rides. I am proud of you for hanging in there despite obstacles. I look forward to reading more bike stories as the pedal, pedal, pedal is experienced in varying ways.

  9. I love it! I headed out for a walk the other night – husband saying I don’t think this is wise with the clouds they way they were but I pushed we made it 1/2 a block when lightening started, thunder rolled and the sky opened up. Summer fun??!! Thanks for the post!

  10. I was riding next to you the whole way. I felt your pain. Your writing always engages me. I loved the photographs. The rain in the door handle, and the photograph of the sky.
    I applaud you for riding your bike when you didn’t want to. You are brave and bold. ” I am beginning the journey of biking again.” I think it is the beginning that makes the difference. You don’t have to be perfect, you just have to begin.

  11. Elsie, another fabulous slice. Your words pedal, pedal, pedal put me right there beside you. This slice will go in my mentor text file to share with my students next year!

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