Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Chasing sunlight

Time to focus on positive things. In my efforts to attempt to include more riding time during the week, I brought my bike to work yesterday. I was too unorganized in the morning to ride to work, as it would have taken too long, and showering in this building is not a viable option. If I was going to ride after work, I needed to leave early. So right at 5pm I decided to head west - in my car. Dumb idea. I'm sitting on the freeway wearing my cycling clothes feeling like an idiot and getting angry while the traffic inched along. I wanted to scream "don't you people know I need to ride?" I was more mad at myself than anything, for not leaving earlier, for not being organized enough to ride more often, for not getting to work earlier and for having such a long commute. How frustrating. Finally I reached my exit and hurried to hop on my bike for what would probably be only a 1/2 hour ride. Better than nothing, I thought, glad that I fought the urge to just say "screw it" and head home to walk the dog. No, I needed this. So I rode west on West Union, figuring I had lights, was wearing a bright vest and I'd figure out the route along the way. Took a right on Jackson Quarry, deciding to ride Helvetia clockwise instead of the usual direction, I pedaled as fast as I could to race the dwindling sunlight. I still haven't decided whether it's easier to pedal up that hill to the church that way or the usual counter-clockwise direction. The orange sun was drifting behind the haze as I cruised at 22mph down Helvetia towards West Union. I coughed through clouds of smoke as I passed houses where they burn their own trash. Cars whizzed past me with their headlights on. Feathery clouds brushed the remaining slivers of orange glow on the horizon as I raced for the car. Driving home just barely warmed up, the sky faded to a dull gray but a tiny bit of red sunk lower in the west. Ah well. Another gorgeous Fall day. Only a 45 minute ride, but definitely better than nothing at all. I just need to plan better so I can ride more.

I'm already looking forward to next year's Tour. The route will be really interesting, starting in Monaco and going right into the Pyrenees.