Image by carljohnson via Flickr
One minute I’m time-trialling like Fabian Cancellara, head down on long straight roads without stop signs or lights, barreling along a sweet flat stretch of uninterrupted pavement, rare around these parts. True, there was my personal Mur de Huy, a solid wall of up that came as a surprise to legs now acclimated to about 40k of flat, and which I couldn’t get up without a granny gear and a red zone. But up I did go, and from there back into a nice low time trialing position. Even the streets of Lansingburgh and north Troy barely slowed me down (and, to be honest, north Troy is about the only place where I ignore red lights for my own personal safety, ’cause the ‘hood ain’t for the spandexed). Then as I started to bomb across the Green Island Bridge, ready to burn up the last dozen k in high style, I was suddenly transformed from Fabian Cancellara into Andy Schleck, hearing an awful noise and suddenly realizing my tour was over. In Andy’s case, a slipped chain at a bad time; in mine, a broken spoke. But in nearly the best place possible, for as fate would have it I was only short blocks from beloved wife’s place of work. There are few women who will serve sag wagon duty (and I really should say camion balais, because “sag wagon” is just not complimentary to women of a certain age), so I am especially blessed. Just glad it didn’t snap up in Hemstreet Park, because her response to that possibility was, “There’s a Hemstreet Park?” There is, it’s home of the Mur de Hemstreet.
Complications involved dropping her at work, getting back to where my truck was courting a parking ticket (commuters are filling up the Corning Preserve boat launch parking lot, leaving no room for people who are actually using the recreational facilities. This is causing me much anger). Drove home, deposited the broken bike, pulled out the backup to ride back to the car, so I could drive back up to the Collar City and pick up faithful spouse. Turns out riding two bikes with VERY different geometry in the same day: not a good idea. Thighs hurt. But it was mostly downhilll, and solved the logistical problem. I even got across the Dunn without a flat!
Now, a swapping of wheels, driving to the bike shop, and continued disappointment from a shortened ride that was otherwise just bliss.