There is a song called Getting to Know You, from the play/movie The King and I that would describe the relationship I had with my bike this week. I’m into week two of the Great Cycle Challenge. This is an event that takes place the full month of June where people can ride miles and raise money for children’s cancer. Needless to say I have been doing my best to keep my bike in shape. I wipe it down and make all the necessary checks before and after the ride. I’ve been lucky….until this past Sunday. I’ve been riding this bike for a little over a year now and I’ve had very few problems. I will also admit I’m still in a learning phase. I’ve learned about my tires and brakes. I’ve learned how to make the necessary adjustments but nothing major.
This weeks rides have been fairly uneventful. I pretty much get up every day to meet the 300 mile goal due at the end of the month. I’m happy to say I’m halfway there as of today. I did two longer rides at about 18 miles a pop. The longer rides take me on Pecos road here in the valley. It is a heavily traveled road by many riders located at the base of the San Tan Mountains. One side is developments and the other side is the Gar Indian reservation, which I find absolutely fascinating.
I love to ride, look at the mountains and make the comparison from one side to the other. On one side of the road are houses and roads that lead into town. On the other side just expanse of desert and the reservation. It is beautiful and intriguing. Interesting observations on my long rides, hmmm:
Cigarettes (tons of packs), a man’s shoe, a fake piece of wood (no idea where that came from), a dead coyote (dude), an empty can of Sapporo beer (Oh come on!) and all the men 60 and over that just blew by me:-\.
Of course everything was moving along swimmingly. I had turned off Pecos road to climb a fairly sizeable hill at around mile 17 and head home. I lowered the gears, apparently I felt I needed to dance around with my gears and then the chain fell off! OMG I start thinking uh, is there a AAA for cyclists? Man, I’ve never done ANYTHING with the chain meaning put it back on the gear. Sigh. So I hop off the bike. After staring at it for about a minute and then realizing that my Garmin was still going I hopped in to fix it mode. Why I feel like I have to beat whatever it is I’m doing before my Garmin resets….I have no idea. I mean really all I have to do is reset it, but there I was feverishly trying to get the chain back on before my Garmin crapped out and hop back on the bike.
I was very pleased that I was able to get the chain back on but it wasn’t 100%. It kept slipping off the back gear. My hands were covered in grease and I didn’t have anything to wipe them with. Now my white grips are a little smudgy. I made it home, but the bike needs some adjusting. Later that night I wanted to go out and “fix” things because I just couldn’t stand it. I believe I made it worse. So…..I will be taking the bike to the shop to see if they can do a quick fix.
Other exciting news, I am under the 9,000 mile mark. I had 71.36 miles for the week with 8,923.70 gratefully remaining. Life is good…even when the chain falls off. Happy Miles to You!