Saturday, January 14, 2012

Andrew's Birthday Ride

Way, way back in 2003, when I was returning to bicycling after an almost 10 year lapse, one of the first folks I met was Andrew B.  And through him, the entire Team Bag Balm herd.  We've ridden together off and on over the years since then.  One of the TBB traditions was the Birthday Ride, wherein you collect a group of friends, ride your birthday in miles, and then eat something.  It was Andrew's birthday yesterday, and he hosted a ride today.  In km, though, because 1) he's not been riding much, and 2) this is easier if your birthday is in the summer.

I figured to ride over, and Fitz would show up when we finished, with a change of clothes for me.  Wasn't supposed to get very wet (we are under a BLIZZARD OF 2012 WATCH from our excitable news media) until later.  Warmest jersey (a fleecy Novara thing), wind vest, Showers Pass jacket, which I was planning on shedding, wool cap with earflaps, PI AmFib gloves (really old ones.  My winter commute gloves), Sugoi Firewall tights, PI shoes.  No booties.  Wasn't going to get that wet.

The ride over was totally uneventful, until I got past OMSI, and my directions said to go E on SE Division and turn R onto SE 13th.  There was a big train sitting right there, not moving.  I kept heading south, looking for ways to go east.  Hopefully sometime before SE Holgate, which goes over the tracks at Brooklyn Yard.  Somewhere in there, my rear tire went squashy.  Called over to say I was Not Far, and was blocked by a train and a flat.  Pumped the tire back up some, and eventually did have to take Holgate east.

Apologized all around.  At that point, I just wanted to change out the tire and tube altogether.  I have decided that tire is now done (2 flats in the last 3 rides).  I did have a spare tire - a brand new Grand Bois.  Philippe commented on the durability of that particular tire (not.  I am living dangerously.  It has supple sidewalls.).  While it went onto the Aerohead rim somewhat easier than the Michelin, it was still a touch tight.  Maybe it will loosen up a bit.  No flats for the balance of the ride.

And so, finally off, through parts of the east side I recognized, all the way up to the summit of Mt Tabor.  We then kept heading east.  And east.  I usually go north to the Columbia River, and then head east.  Or Cecil takes us east another way (182nd to Halsey, to Troutdale and beyond).

So.  The mist was persistent, but not too bad.  I was plenty warm.  Introduced myself to the riders I did not know (Jim H. and Jim H.).  They were both professors at OGI when Fitz was getting his Masters in CS.  They were both HIS professors :-) Now all at PSU, as is Andrew.

Caught up with Andrew and Diane. Heard about Nat's first grandchild.  Talked about generator hubs and lighting with Jim H.  Also recruited.  I know he wants to be a randonneur :-)

Heavier mist.  Perhaps even rain.  We misplaced Diane and Nat - turns out they went another way, and we'd find them further along.  Started south (headwind, rain) through Outer Troutdale.  I have probably ridden here on a Livestrong Ride, or the Barlow Trail Century.  After some wandering around, we eventually dropped onto the Springwater Corridor.  The rain had really picked up, and the road down to the trail had a impressive head of water coming down the gutter.  We stayed out of the bike lane :-)

By this point, my shoes had given it up, and my feet were gone.  The tights weren't helping much, either.  Serious dry clothing fantasies.  Stopped under I-205 to call Fitz, because we were about 20 or so minutes out.  Andrew and I convinced Diane to peel off, go home and get dry clothes, and then come over to eat; she doesn't live too far from Andrew.

Turned off the Springwater to ride...up a wall.  SE Flavel.  I made it.  Didn't stop.  Was even gaining on Andrew.  Bike computer reveals incline of 14-16%.  I'll die later.  A bit further along Flavel, a guy out walking commented that we had really nice bikes (thank you!) and were real troopers for riding today.  Progressing through SE Portland.  When we crossed SE Woodstock, I knew it wasn't much further.  Dry clothes, dry clothes, dry clothes...

Put my bike on the porch, and was taking off my sopping wet shoes prior to going inside.  Fitz drove up, so I stuffed my feet back in the shoes, and we loaded the bike in the car.  Dry clothes, dry clothes, dry clothes...

Whereupon I inhaled ate some REALLY GREAT Thai-inspired squash soup created by Patty, lots of bread with butter, cheese, and some excellent plum preserve (not all on the same pieces of bread), salad, gingerbread, hot cider, hot tea...  And enjoyed more visiting around.  Got to see pics of Nat's grandson.  Caught up with Patty (she had a cold and didn't ride), as well as Dave and Edna.

The cold air return at home is working hard on drying my shoes and gloves.

The route
48.9 miles by my bike computer, avg pace 11.83.
A fair amount of stopping, none initiated by me. :-)
Maybe I'll host a birthday 200k...


tangobiker said...

My god, Lynne. You're quick with your posts! I still haven't writen up PBP yet! (And basically stopped blogging at that point.)

I have fond memories of rides with Andrew, including the Dart that he, Cecil & I rode in '08, as well as his birthday ride a couple years ago.

I 'celebrated' Andrew's birthday with a hilly 100k reconnaissance ride out to Haag Lake. 'Twas wet around Bald Peak, but mostly chilly afterwards. Wish I'd brought booties.

Cheers, Bill

lynnef said...

yeah, I wished I'd brought booties, as well.

Diane K said...

Nice write-up! And it was good to ride with (mostly behind) you!


Davo said...

We did a birthday ride up here in Seattle on Saturday that had a similar outcome. Sometimes going a little bit past good judgment can remind us how wonderful July can be.