We were supposed to be sitting at home, watching the rain fall, or the TV… or something. Anything but lining up for the ’17 Ride for Recovery.
I was a patient at Dawn Farm, an addiction rehab facility, just shy of 25 years ago now. Today, the company I own pays the entry fee for any of my friends who want to show up to that ride (amazing what a quarter-century of sobriety will do to one’s financial outlook). It was amazing that three of my best riding friends would show up with such a sketchy forecast. Still, the rain was supposed to hold off till we finished.
The outlook wasn’t so positive on Saturday so we decided to hammer out a long ride with the expectation that Sunday would be spent chilling out due to showers and thunderstorms that were on the way up from the south. We did 60 miles in a little over three hours.
Long story short, we had a narrow window that would afford us only a 15-25% chance of getting wet, and the radar showed we should survive unscathed. We chose to do the 40 mile route, rather than the 58, to give us the best chance to beat the coming weather and because, dude… We were tired (except Chuck, in the blue. He was on fresh legs, I think).
We rolled out on damp roads and settled in.
Thirteen miles later, even though I knew the route and had ridden it the last six years in a row, I let my friends lead us into a wrong turn. I tried to tell everyone that we were going the wrong way but they saw the arrows that said we had to go this way. I just smiled and rolled with them. We were four miles in when they realized we were in trouble.
We doubled back and picked up the route again. At that point the 40 mile route was making a lot of sense.
We finished our ride excellently with my buddy Mike and I doing almost all of the turns up front in the last 18 miles. We ended up with 48 miles on the day – 147 and some change for Friday, Saturday and Sunday for Mike and I.
In the last eight miles, Diane (on the far right in the photo above) talked about how she was grateful to be able to be riding with friends. We each chimed in with our own bit of gratitude for the day’s fellowship.
I finished the 48 mile ride thinking about how lucky I was to be on the final stretch with a tight group of friends and my wife.
With that, the ride was in the bag. Not a drop of rain hit us
After, we took advantage of some lunch, changed clothes, packed up and headed for home. We hit the expressway for home and within a few miles we were being rained on. Turned out we’d just made it. Perfect.