Thursday, September 4, 2014

20 Mile Bike Ride and a New Bike

One day, Elizabeth asked me about going on a bike ride. I agreed immediately even if it meant that I had to get up early on a Sunday. I could do it and I did.

We set our goal of 25 miles heading down the Brays Bayou to Terry Hershey Park. But if we could go for 30 miles, we totally would go for it. I realistically could do 20 miles and would be pushing myself to 25 miles. It's okay to have a crazy goal on the back burner though.

So, we set out with me in the lead. I immediately noticed the darkness surrounding my area. I made a statement that we need to watch out for storm possibilities, but had no desire to delay or cancel our bike ride. Since I'm not running right now, I needed another form of exercise besides swimming and working out at the gym (gyming?). If anything you will learn about living in Houston, a monsoon that looks like the Gods will come down upon us to flood out the city so that we can rebuild society could be happening on one side of your apartment building, while you will never feel a drop on the other side. And I'm not kidding. But you still need to keep an eye on what is going on around you stormwise (well and kidnappingwise, rapingwise, murderwise, stupidwise, etc.).

Let's just throw it out there...I'm slow. A great deal of this has to do with the fact that I have a hybrid bike, but I'm still slow anyways. I was on my way to getting faster in the bike last year, but lost my speed after surgery. I accept my slowness and move on with the ride. I only felt a little bad for Elizabeth being a faster rider stuck behind a slower one. So, she got to watch me. I learned a lot by the time I got to the bayou like my hand signals were incorrect. I rode when I was little all over my neighborhood, but do you think we used hand signals? Heck no. We didn't even wear helmets and rarely stopped. Currently, I ride with large groups or by myself. However, one time, I rode around my area at Thanksgiving with another person. Needless to say, I didn't know the correct hand signals and nobody corrected me until now. And I was glad for that, but I did get confused later on in the ride trying to remember which one to use.

I'm also used to just jumping on a sidewalk if I feel unsafe, because I'm by myself. One time, I messed up and went on the sidewalk without thinking about Elizabeth. I didn't do that again...not because she punished me for it, but because I realized it was not a smart or safe idea.

And then the monsoon hit...let me clarify, the first monsoon hit. I couldn't see much. It got windy; I was a little cold; I was definitely wet. We sought shelter in this gym area and then ventured out when it eased up a bit. Then, the next monsoon hit and then it dried up making it cool and beautiful. In fact, I noticed a rainbow painted into the cloud (wished I took a picture). We smelled donuts in the breeze; we said hello to everyone; we had gone the farthest that I have gone on this trail; I might make 30 miles. Then, the third monsoon hit and only looked to get worse. It was dark and the clouds were deep for miles. We decided to just turn around. We made it under 610 before we took another weather break.

This was the only time I felt comfortable enough to bring out my phone to snap some pictures.

The rain didn't stop, but it eased up enough for us to continue our bike ride home. To be honest, I was tired of the rain and just wanted to be home. Funny thing about this rain is that it hit us from the front in the one direction and then hit us from the front again in the opposite direction. WTH?! My shoes were flooded. My seat area was flooded. I eventually took off my glasses, because they were worthless to me at this point.

We finally made it home as a wet sloppy mess. We rode 20 miles through at least three monsoons in roughly 2 hours (according to Jim). I will take it since I mostly do 20 miles, while stopping for long periods of time for beer and tacos or elotes and more beer (not that there is anything wrong with that). And I learned a great deal of information just by riding with someone other than myself. For instance, bring plastic bags for your electronics. Thankfully, the rain always hit from the front.

Even with all the rain, I couldn't have asked for a better experience. Well, except for I got sick the next day and didn't feel better until well, today.

My floor after standing there for a minute. And no, my water didn't break.
During our talks, Elizabeth convinced me to go bike shopping on that day. We were just to go shopping (I swear), but I found a bike that fit me perfectly for rather inexpensive at Bicycle World in West U. I fell in love.

Meet Cylo, because he reminds me of a cylon. Thanks to Dave for coming up with the name. I haven't rode him yet due to sickness, but I'm hoping to get on him tonight. Oh yeah.

He's so sexy! He could sleep with you. He could be nice to you. He could kill you in multiple ways from multiple versions of the same looking clone. He is CYLO!!!

Elizabeth was nice enough to give me her old bike rack for two. Although, I need to find a better place to put it.


  1. Congrats on your new bike ! I hope the weather will be better for your next bike ride.

    1. Thanks Freya. I actually rode yesterday and it was much nicer.

  2. Oh wow! 3 monsoons! I love your positive outlook, though! You pretty much have a good time no matter what gets in your way. I loved imagining the donut smell that rewarded you, ha! Congrats on a new bike! Don and I are taking off on another road trip (as in car) and we're thinking of taking bikes. He was trying to convince me today to do the same thing, purchase a road bike and leave my heavy thing behind. We'll see! Btw, my red Schwinn bicycle from 3rd grade was named Nelly!

  3. Being able to lift my road bike with one hand is so much better than lifting my hybrid with my whole body. I highly recommend it, but get used to it before you take it on the road. Where are y'all going this time?


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