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Who Turned Off Summer? And I’m Glad It Happened; Conversely, It’s Doesn’t Have to Be All Fast All of the Time

My buddy, Mike got a new bike Friday.  Well, a new frame for his Di2 components.  Trek helped him out under their crash replacement warranty whereby they replace a cracked frame with a newer model at a discount.  They replaced his old Madone 7-Series (with the Godforsaken rear rim brake under the chainstays) with a Emonda 700 series (their lightest frame), and it is beautiful… and, thank goodness for Mike, it’s gray and black with white lettering and red flourishes.  He gets to dress in black and red again! [there’s an inside story to this and his old babyshit greet 7-series that goes way back].

So we took the good bikes out yesterday morning.  And it was cold.  We’d been gifted unseasonably awesome weather for four-and-a-half days and it finally came crashing to an end…  Mrs. Bgddy was testing out the loaner gravel bike, Vince was out on his Pinarello F-10 eTap Team Sky Edition with Zipp Whale-back wheels ([!]  The wheels alone are $4,000 and made to order), and I had my Venge.  Sadly, Vince flatted three miles out and had grabbed the wrong saddle bag that didn’t have his valve extension so he had no way to replace the tube.  Mrs. Bgddy rode back to get her SUV to pick Vince up and we rode on at their request.

Two days before I was riding in a short-sleeved jersey and bibs.  Now I had two layers, wool socks, toe covers, ear muffs (the behind the neck kind, VASTLY better than a cap – I highly recommend them for cold weather riding), full-fingered gloves… the whole nine yards.  I was never cold, but I certainly wasn’t warm, either.

Mike and I just cruised the 35-mile route, talking about what cyclists normally talk about when out cycling… Cycling.

We were so slow I was almost shocked for a Saturday ride, but when it came down to it, I didn’t care.  It being the middle of October, the season is done.  Now it’s just bonus miles and good times with my friends.

All of fastest rides of the year are memories, jarred every time the furnace kicks on.  Oh, but they still put a smile on my face.

Today we’ve got a gravel ride out of town.  I’ll be loading up the bikes for a rare, short drive to the start.  It’s cold again, but I’ve got the gear to enjoy the ride…. and they’re all fun miles now, anyway.  The real work won’t start again until January – when I’ll have two months to whip myself into shape on the trainer for another epic spring.

I’m sad to see the season go, but I’m glad at the same time.  I’m tired.  It’s time to sit back and enjoy a few easy rides with my friends… and remember the good times we had over the last six months.

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