Friday, December 24, 2010

You've Got Male

Me: Well hello there.
FedExMan: You opened the door before I rang your bell.
Me: I know the sound of a good looking man's footsteps.
FedExMan: Tha's some package.
Me: Clearly.
FedExMan: I hope they'll keep you warm.
Me: I'm always hot, Mister.
FedExMan: Um, clearly.

I like good customer service, don't you. I've been busy buying lots of shoes and eating chocolates given to me from people who know my fondness for certain pleasures.

Finally a dry day. The route:

Santa Teresa -->Bailey -->McKean -->Country View -->McKean -->Almaden --Coleman

I ran over a crushed beer bottle but the tank tires and I laughed, knowing a flat tire would not be on the horizon. Headwind on Santa Teresa gave me a workout. I averaged 12.8 mph by the time I reached Bailey and dropped to 11.8 after the tiny climb. The piece de resistance, though, after chocolate that is, was to see whether I could climb Country View, a hill I've strugged with on the old bike. I have many a hill to tackle with the new bike.

I've said it before but heck, why not again, I love the Specialized Ruby Elite Compaq with SRAM gears. I won't go so far as to say that it was la dee da going up Country View but it was darn close. I climbed at a speed of 3.4 - 4 mph through the developed part. While taking a photo, a mail truck passed and the mail man stopped for a chat. Alas, once again, I became distracted by all things male. So, I didn't bike the remaining barren land but next time.

Just the Stats:

21.57 miles
12 mph avg
28.5 mph descent
1 hr 46 min.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

It's All in the Family

If you ever wondered where it all started, then look no further ... my mom a year ago at age 74, swinging away in the jungle.
Meanwhile, the rain has forced me to ride indoors. Dull, it has made me dull.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Bonny Doon Day

photo by Thomas Preisler

It was a mild sunny November day at the coast near Davenport, the perfect weather for the Bonny Doon Pine Flat LKHC event.

Time to get back in the saddle again, this being the second ride for me since late August and post surgery. Did I prepare for the Bonny Doon ride? Well, earlier in the week, I bought a push up bra. You see, it's not about the bike. It's all about the bra! Ha ha ha ha. The Boyfriend, away on business in another country, is probably shaking his head.

After biking 6 miles along the coast from Santa Cruz, I came upon another sea, a sea of male cyclists swimming in testosterone at the start. Now I was warmed up and ready to ride, for sure! The Boyfriend, away on business in another country, is probably sighing.

100+ of us set off to do the 7.25 climb, steep in parts, flat in others. I managed to pass three women and caught up to the Boy Wonder, much to my shock and delight. I even pushed myself. I love the Specialized Ruby Elite. Yes, it is about the bike, too.

Eventually though, the women passed me and I finished last (quelle surprise, non?). I did beat the Boy. Maybe if I had remembered to wear that push up bra .... Afterwards I glided down Empire Grade, a beautiful silent, peaceful descent that leads back to Santa Cruz.

Lookey what Dan the Man, gave me! I love receiving gifts. Made my day. Next week's ride is Hicks and Mt. Um. I don't think I'm ready for that level of climbing, even if I wear the push up bra. The Boyfriend, away on business in another country, is probably sighing and shaking his head...

Sunday, October 31, 2010

The Return of Weenie Woman

Route: Piedmont -->Felter-->down Sierra

The last time I rode my new bike, the Specialized Ruby Elite Carbon Compact, was August 28th. Yesterday, when I did sit ups for the first time since the surgery, I knew it was time to get back on the bike. I love this bike, people! I felt strong and light (the removal of 4lbs of tumors probably helped) climbing Felter, as though the surgery and post recovery never happened. I love this bike and its SRAM gearing system.

Oh the things I saw on Felter. Two squirrels doing something the nasty. Eek. Lots of horses and cows. And then the pond with the frogs frolicking. I only got a photo of one as the others dived below surface. Too adorable.

Then of course, as usual, I met this guy ... I was singing songs from The Sound of Music.

He: So, do you go to the hills when your heart is lonely?
Me: I go to the hills to meet men like you, Mister!

He was hot, like the actor John Hamm, and with a five o'clock shadow. We played tag with one another, he out front for awhile, me overtaking him for a time but he blew me away going down Sierra. I lost a lot of time on the descent after feeling so triumphant about my outing.

Perfect weather conditions. Lovely views. The hills were alive with the sounds of cyclists, including me.
Just the stats:
16.54 miles
8.3 avg mph (my best a year ago was 8.8)
29 mph on descent
1 hr 58 min

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Let's Go for a Spin

LKHC Portola State Park / W. Alpine - Week 3 Report

After seeing Patrick Dempsey biking last weekend at Levi's GranFondo, I wondered how I might top that experience.

Well ... let me count the ways:

Friday --

First, the Earth moved ... oh alrighty, we had a teenie earthquake in San Jose.

Next, The GF contacted me:

GF: Want to go for a ride in The Car Sat? assuming you don't have plans with what's his name?
Me: The Boyfriend? What BF? You betcha!

Saturday --

A sea of male cyclists clad in tight fitting spandex milling about after the LKHC Portola State Park climb. Let me repeat. A sea of male cyclists clad in .... How I so enjoyed listening to the first batch of cyclists as they came across the finish line -- such heavy breathing. Made me wonder if it was any indication of .... by now The BF is making faces ... alas, their efforts/breathing reminded me of why I always finish last. I simply save my energy and breathing for other activities. Oh oh, The BF is undoubtedly making faces.

Oh lookey, it's The Boyfriend off to do another ride after the hillclimb. Earlier we had a conversation which of course I shall share with you:

Me: Are your legs fresh for the climb? [last weekend, he did the GranFondo]
BF: I hope so
Me: Because I like fresh men
BF: I bet you do
Me: And sophmores, and seniors, undergraduates, and ...
BF: Listen Missy, the only man you need is me, a real man.
Me: Ooooh, assertive. And you look good in tight fitting spandex.
BF: Damn right, Missy.

Ah, the piece de resistance. How to top all that had come before? The GF took me for a spin in The Car, a wee bit bigger than the one shown above. She put on her driving gloves, I wanted to wear a race car helmet. Oh my God, dare I say it, it may be on par with chocolates and sex. I thought we were in an airplane taking off on the runway. Loud, fast, two women, hot damn. Vrooom vrooom.

And finally, the last spin of my tale. Sunday, The BF and I went out on our Specialized hybrids before the rain came. It was my first outing since the surgery. We made our way to Shoreline on a flat course. 12 miles at 8.5 mph avg. Sad, I know, but I have to start somewhere.

Cheers to the men and women who did the LKHC Portola/Alpine ride.

Saturday, October 9, 2010


How I so wished to participate in the second year of Levi's GranFondo but surgery has put a dent in biking activities. Still, I had quite the day in Santa Rosa.

I walked 3.3. miles from the hotel to the event. Along the way, I encountered many a tattoo parlor, palm reader rooms as well as a memorial park for Luther Burbank, a prominent and world renowned horticulturist at the turn of the 20th century.

I came across plenty of tributes to the characters of Charles Schultz's Peanuts. Go Snoopy!

Perhaps it was a good thing not to participate in this year's GranFondo. Not sure I could handle biking with 5,999 other cyclists. I was thrilled when I saw biking buddies P and C come across the finish line. I was so proud of them. Another great moment that everyone seemed to enjoy was watching little cyclists (kids under 10) finish. Quite the show.

Last year, I snapped a photo of Levi. A thrill. This year - the big surprise.... Oh my God, it's Patrick Dempsey! What a frigging hunk. No different up close and in person. Frigging hunk, people.

I waited and waited in the hot sun for The Boyfriend to cross the finish line and I completely missed him! While he is not a Hollywood celebrity, he is well known in other circles and world renowned too, and a frigging hunk up close and in person. He had just gotten over a cold, and returned from a speaking engagement the day before, yet, he did the 102 mile course, averaging 15 mph. Wow! What a day for interesting characters doing this event -- later The BF told me that he saw The Fat Cyclist and his wife The Runner.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

2010 LKHC Montebello Week 1

Another season, another reason, for making whoopee....
Alas, I intended to make a splash this year but I may be out for the entire series. I even have a new bike and more importantly, it matches the color of my teammate's bike. Great turnout for the first week, along with new participants! We're off to a super start.
Photos and results available at the LKHC website.
1. Our first 80 year old participant. We should all aspire to his level of fitness.
2. Lisa, unable to participate because her 100lb+ Golden Retriever accidentally fractured her hand.
3. The Park Ranger. 'nuf said.
4. Me flirting. 'nuf said.
5. It's Dan the Man, our host, birthday!!
In honor of Dan, the series, and Kevin, the other founder:
My take on All Summer Long, Kid Rock’s tribute to Lynyrd Skynyrd Sweet Home Alabama

It was 1995, Dan’s thoughts were short, his hair was long
Caught somewhere between a boy and man
Then there was Kevin, a cyclist, and friend of Dan’s
It was Fall time in the Bay Area

[chorus of cyclists cranking their pedals]

Checking out the first hill climb, talking about having a series
It's the simple things in life like when and where
They didn't have much Internet but man they’ll never forget
The way they met and came up with the name Low Key Hillclimb
And they were trying different things, they were taking in funny gel things
Climbing hills to their favorite song
Sipping gatorade out the water bottle, not thinking 'bout tomorrow
Singing Low Key Hillclimbs series all Fall long
Singing Low Key Hillclimbs series all Fall long

The local cyclists came out from all over
And more over,
That first year will forever hold a spot
inside Dan’s and Kevin’s souls
They sweated in the sun, they couldn't wait for the next ride to come
To take in another hill, crank the gears and roll
And they were trying different things, they were taking in funny gel things
Climbing hills to their favorite song
Sipping gatorade out the water bottle, not thinking 'bout tomorrow
Singing Low Key Hillclimbs series all Fall long
Singing Low Key Hillclimbs series all Fall long

[chorus of cyclists cranking their pedals]

Now nothing seems as strange as when times began to change
They thought those LKHC days would never end
But Dan left for Texas, leaving the gang behind
The series came to an end in 1998, a hiatus had begun,
No more blistering in the sun, no more fun
Sometimes they remember those days and they’d start to pedal along
Singing about the LKHC series all Fall long
And think, man, the series must live again

Fast forward to 2006, it was time once more to get their kicks,
The series started up again with our favorite hosts
Though Kevin left in 2007 for the East Coast
Only to return each year for the Mt. Ham Thanksgiving roast,
Thanks to Dan the Man and Kevin our man from Connecticut and all the volunteers
Who once again give us the Low Key Hillclimbs in 2010 all Fall long

One, Two, Three, Turn it Up …. Big wheels keep on turning ....

Happy Birthday to Dan the Man

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

A Model Patient

Ah, life post surgery ....
Unclear as to when I may resume biking, so, in the meantime, I look forward to being a volunteer for the 2010 Low Key Hillclimbs -- the series begins this Saturday with Montebello, the traditional opener.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Once Around the Lake

I took The Boyfriend out for a spin around Lexington Reservoir, giving him a treat --- climbing Soda Springs. He wasn't around last year to do the 5.35 mile climb (2368 feet) at 8.4% with fellow Low Key Hillclimbers. We also planned to do Black Road, another climb he hasn't done but I have with my buds S and P. We encountered wind and chilly temperatures and skipped Black. Once again, our strange summer.

The BF found the climb relentless. Me, just as with the LKHC event, I went up and up going la dee da la dee da. I don't know why but I find it an easy climb -- yet, the descent is tricky particularly this time as we biked in loose gravel. The road was recently repaved. And with my new Specialized Ruby, I felt as though I was on auto pilot.

The BF was so cold that he borrowed my arm warmers. Me, I was sweating it out thanks to another menopausal moment. I gave my saddle one last chance, breaking it in, you know, like I do with my men. Nope, will need to replace it, like I've done with many a man.

This is my last bike for awhile -- as some of you know, I am scheduled for surgery soon. I share with you a conversation I had with my doctor:

Me: Will you be using a big scapel or a little one?
Dr: Ha ha ha, for you, a power drill, honey.
Me: Will I have a big scar or a little scar?
Dr: You might consider changing your name to Frankenstein.

I probably won't be doing any of the Low Key Hillclimbs this year but I hope to be at some of the events taking photos! I am optimistic that I might get to do one or two rides. Anyway, I don't know that I'll be posting much for awhile ....

Just the Stats:

16 miles
27.5 max on descent
7 mph avg.
2 hr 15 min.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Tour of Napa Valley

How I would have liked to have titled this blog entry "Naughty in Napa" but not so for this year's trip to Napa to do the Tour of Napa Valley. If you can't sleep some night, you might find that my 2007 and 2009 entries are far more entertaining.

The Boyfriend and I spent the weekend at our usual hideaway, a winery with some lodgings, lovely place near St. Helena. Saturday morning, the sky was overcast and the air rather chilly, as our summer has been this year. It struck me to visit the Bubbling Well Pet Memorial Park on Atlas Peak Road where my beloved cat Cabbage is buried. It's off Silverado Trail. Lovely road for cyclists and we saw a few.

After the marine layer burned off, we did a portion of the 100 mile route of the Tour of Napa Valley. We climbed Mt. Veeder and descended Oakville Grade (photo above). 38 miles total.

For the tour on Sunday, the weather changed for the better and the marine layer burned off quickly. Above is my friend P along with The BF at the first rest stop. I saw her again at the lunch stop and then at a Starbucks on the way home. Pity we didn't bike together.

As for the Tour -- like my friend P, I first did this tour in 2005 on my hybrid. This year was the first time with my new bike, the Specialized Ruby. Okay people, no one flirted with me. Did my fancy bike scare them off? What's a tour without flirting! What was I to do? Oh my God, bike? Even my best buddy Lorraine at work said, "No flirting! What did you do for 5 hours?" Exactly!

I am convinced people, convinced that The BF who opted to do the 100K this time, was marking his territory with chemicals (pheromones?) that told male cyclists in some secret language hands off. The BF is probably shaking his head, wondering about my mental state.

At least I saw a pink cow on the Silverado Trail! So, how did I do? Well, minus the motivational flirting factor --

in 2007, I averaged 14.4 mph (probably because I consumed massive amounts of gels)
in 2009, I averaged 13.3 mph.

This time around, I had the new bike and my tushy was in pain. My friend P suggested that I get the Ruby saddle, and I will consider it. Later though, I remembered that I forgot to apply body butter to my bum! And I wore shorts that irritate me. Brilliant. The Tour of Napa Valley is a beautiful ride, the food is fantastic, the volunteers are super and like other tours this year, going green (recycling efforts).

Just the stats:

67 miles
13.2 mph avg.
31.5 max descent
5 hr. 26 min.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Meet My Ruby

My 2005 Bianchi Eros Donna (aluminum triple) suffered an injury and the prognosis was not good, so, The Boyfriend and I went bike shopping. First though, he took my measurements (36-26-34). We were pretty set thanks to an excellent bike fitting with the old bike and the recommendation that I move from a 44cm to a 47 or 48cm frame.

What did I buy?

2011 Specialized Ruby Elite Carbon Compact
SRAM Apex (11-32 cassette with a 34/50 compact crank)

The Boyfriend bought the water bottle cages. I know what you're thinking -- a man who buys you bottle cages is a keeper! The sales rep. tried to convince him to buy me the bike as well.

We took Ruby for a spin on Sand Hill, Whiskey Hill and Canada Road. The BF was amazed by how easily I adjusted to the compact and the gearing system. That's because he gave me lessons beforehand. Jury is still out about the saddle but I'm pleased with my new bike.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Misty in Marin

I pleaded. I begged. I pouted. I jumped up and down on the hotel bed. I threw myself under a train. I tried to seduce The Boyfriend into submission, all to no avail, despite my shapely figure and shameful tactics. We started the Marin Century at 6:27am. It was barely light out! I was ready for my nap after riding a few minutes.

We last did this ride 2 years ago. My route, the 100K had changed, for the better. The BF, stud that he is, did the Mt. Tam 100M. We began in a thick and chilly marine layer that did not burn off until mile 45. I had to wear my arm warmers and jacket for most of the ride. The BF was rained upon in some forest.

Ah yes, back to the beginning. I got my revenge for the early start -- within a mile or so, The BF witnessed men already "chatting" with me.

Lookey, a giant marshmellow farm! How I wanted to roll in them and become all gooey and sticky. And meet the Jolly Green Giant and climb his stalk.

My entourage. Notice how happy they are. What can I say. I even had men in cars slowing down to chat with me. The BF shakes his head and sighs.

I love this ride despite finding the rollers to be more tiring than the Santa Cruz Mtns. Challenge. The descents would have been fabulous had it not been so darn cold.

I love the brie and figs served at rest stops. The cyclists were polite, calling out that they were passing.

Both of us banged it out the last 10 miles or so. The Boyfriend did about 9,000 feet of climbing to my 3,830. We'll be back another year, for sure. Thanks to all the volunteers, sponsors and police officers who make this a lovely ride.

Just the stats:

58 miles
29 mph max
13.2 mph avg
4 hrs 40 min riding time
(The BF finished an hour maybe after me!)

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Out for a Climb

Ah, The Santa Cruz Mountains Challenge. Not for the faint hearted. The Boyfriend started before the stars faded. Me, I slept in, arrived in Scotts Valley, drove around convinced that the high school had been deliberately moved, but eventually I found my way to the start. A volunteer had me park right next to the school entrance and another volunteer took photos of me and my bike. What a way to start the day!

The start was a bit cold but as you see from the photo above taken on Mtn. Charlie, blue skies arrived quickly. I later learned from the tour director that about 680 of us participated.

So many men, so little time to discuss. What can I say. I don't even try anymore. Ah, the highway patrol man at Rest Stop #1 with his aviator glasses, the beige uniform, the motorcycle. My tongue fell out. I was tongue tied. I could not think of one reason to persuade him to handcuff me. Me, at the top of Jamison Creek, which I managed to climb for the most part. At one point on Jamison, it was just a bunch of us chicks and we let out a mighty roar together.

Lots of cheering from strangers during the ride. A little boy not even 4 on his balcony shouting, "Go rider babe." Made my day. A group sitting in their camper clapping as cyclists rode by. Oh, a bobcat darted across Bonny Doon as I was descending. I also ran into club friends, too. Well, not literally.

After climbing and descending the redwoods, coming into Santa Cruz on W. Cliff Drive was just stunning. I'm sorry not to have shot a pic of Santa Cruz and the boardwalk but, get this, I was in a peleton, oh alrighty, I was in the back, but, I just didn't want to stop.

Ah, yes, the spot, you know, the one that eludes many men. But I digress.

What a ride. Perfect weather. Climbs for the 100K included Mtn. Charlie, Empire Grade, Riva Ridge, Smith Grade among others. Bear Creek was fabulous to descend.

Just as I was coming back to the start, I saw The BF leaving. I waved to him. He did the 100 mile in 7 hours! I don't think he noticed the two men (they were a hoot) escorting me back to the school. Back at the school, I ran into AC! Great way to end the day.

Thanks to the volunteers and club members who put on this great tour.

Just the Stats:

62 miles
6,470 elevation gain
10 mph avg
32 mph max
6 hours biking time

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Me on Montebello

The Boyfriend was unable to bike with me today. We had planned to join an ACTC ride, one involving many difficult climbs. Like I was going to do any of them....

What to do, what to do with him out of the picture for the day? Go back to bed? Tempting. No, no, no, I tossed the bon bons aside, put on my best Billy Idol snarl and tackled Montebello.

I had to stop a few times because of over heating. Go Menopause. Wait, me pause from men? And then, this really good looking guy came whizzing by.

Me: I'm soooo hot.
He: You can do it. Why don't you follow me?
Me: Well, if you insist, (licking my sticky lips).

Just yesterday, I told The BF I am a leader. Sometimes though, it's best to be a follower.... Of course, he was soon out of eyesight but it was fun while it lasted.

Ah, what a view on the way down. A cyclist stopped and asked if I wanted my picture taken. Hmm, what cyclist stops on a great descent? Clearly, he wanted to flirt with me. The BF is shaking his head as he reads this post.

Biking back on Foothill Expressway and Stevens Canyon was refreshing after baking in the sun on the climb. Somewhere on the ride, I managed to do 29 mph max but my average was 9.4 mph for the 21 mile ride.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Saturday in San Benancio Canyon

Reporting to The Boyfriend who is holed up in some rainy European locale --

Me: I drove to Salinas to meet P and M for a super ACTC ride.
He: Where did you go?
Me: We rode San Benancio Canyon and Corral de Tierra off Hwy 68.
He: I spent the day watching rain.
Me: The rodeo was in town!
He: You don't say.
Me: Time to lasso in a cowboy!
He: I thought you were into firemen.
Me: Didn't anyone ever tell you that variety spices up one's life?
He: I'm a nice varietal.
Me: Yes, but you're there, and I'm here ... speaking of which ....
He: How many men did you meet this time?
Me: Well, you see, P and I were on the side of the road and this good looking guy stopped.
He: No doubt to check you out.
Me: He thought we had a flat. Of course that's code for yes he stopped to check us out.
He: Sigh.

Fun to do a ride where I've never been before. Thanks to M for this treat.
Just the stats:
22 miles
25.5 mph descending
9.5 mph avg
2 hr 15 min.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

To the Wall and Beyond

While AC and The Boyfriend cycled at warp speed, I went my usual weenie pace as we climbed Old Calaveras, The Wall, Calaveras, Welch Creek, into Sunol and back to Felter and Piedmont.

Along the rollers of Calaveras, we saw lots of other cyclists. I belted out show tunes no doubt to the delight of all who crossed my path. The Boyfriend no doubt was delighted to have missed the show.

While AC and The BF climbed Welch Creek, I shot photos of flowers. I, however, was not a complete pansy. Drum roll --- no laughing but I finally got up the steep part of Old Calaveras, well, 99% of it. Making progress!

AC descending the last bit of Welch Creek! The BF noted that that the road has been repaved. Good thing since it's included in this year's Low Key Hillclimbs.

AC and The BF heading back. We planned on biking to Sierra (summit) as well but the heat finally caught up to us. They did 53 miles in 4 1/2 hours to my 43 in shorter time. Sigh.

Just the stats:

43 miles
29 mph descent
11 mph avg
3 hr 53 min

Monday, July 5, 2010

All is Not Lost

The BF: Whatcha doing today?
Me: I think I'll go for a swim.
The BF: Ah yes, in the bathtub, right, where it takes 50 laps to do 1/4 mile.
Me: It's called a pool, Mister.
The BF: Ah yes, a pool built for the weenie people of the world.
Me: Grrr. But it comes with a pool boy decked out in tight lycra.
The BF: I come decked out in tight lycra.
Me: Yes, but do you serve coconut infused alcoholic drinks with those cute paper umbrellas?
The BF: Oh, I'll serve you up something good Missy.
Me: Yeah, like what?
The BF: Not fit for your blog. Be ready at 9am.
Me: Oooooh. I might forget about the pool boy.

The Boyfriend, who's been out of the picture recently due to a heavy travel schedule, took me in his chariot over to Santa Cruz where we planned to bike along Hwy 1 over to Pine Flat and Empire Grade. Alas, the coastal fog zapped our cycling plans no matter how far we traveled north.

But, all was not lost as The Boyfriend brought me a bouquet of flowers. Like he said, that's about all I can write because the rest is not fit for this blog entry. :)
Now, about that pool boy.....

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Sweaty in Sveadal

Once a year, I eat pancakes and sausages -- at the ACTC 4th of July breakfast -- and with our bellies full, club members, decked out in red, white and blue, set off to do various rides. I chose to go with S & P, the host and hostess with the most and mostess.
Our cool group of 14 riders sweated it out over to Sveadal, a Swedish American community tucked away on Croy Road in Morgan Hill, near Uvas Canyon County Park. Who knew!
Alas, I do not flirt in hot weather. Oh alrighty, just a little bit on Uvas as a number of SJBC cyclists flew by. Can't exactly say I was Susan Sarandon with the ice cube melting down her chest in Atlantic City or Kathleen Turner turning William Hurt's head in Body Heat. Then again ....
A good ride with fun people. I finally feel comfortable on the bike again as the memory of the bike accident recedes.
Just the stats:
54 miles
12.2 mph avg.
29.5 mph on descent
4 hrs 23 min.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Snippets from the Sequoia Century

Context: Annual Western Wheelers Sequoia Century, a route that includes Redwood Gulch, Hwy 9, Skyline, Alpine, Pescadero, Stage Road, Tunitas Creek, Whiskey Hill and more. I was dripping in sweat for most of this hot hot weather day unlike last year's event. I did the metric (6000 ft of climbing). The Boyfriend, stud that he is, did the 100 miler (9000 ft). Team Spike was out in force as were other teams. And lots of guys in Death Ride shirts. Not me. I wore an ordinary jersey, just pretty in pink and well, you know, naturally I met lots of guys....

At the firestation rest stop (someone obviously knows my firemen fantasies), I ran into David from the Low Key Hill climbs! He was doing the 200K! Great to see him.

Me: David, I'm hot!
He: You're always hot.

My, there's a man I like ... knows instinctly how to butter a woman.

And then who should appear but The Boyfriend! My heart fluttered.

Me: I couldn't do the steepest part of Redwood Gulch. I met a man as I walked.
BF: You don't say.
Me: At first, I thought he was you with his Livestrong outfit. He was so handsome.
BF: Oh please.
Me: And I did an Aly McBeal number, you know, my tongue fell out, panting.
BF: Sigh.
Me: Lookey, firemen. How about we stop to say hello.
BF: Get on your bike and ride, woman.
Me: Yes, sir.

Alas, this was the last time I was to see my man.

There's a farm with horses and donkeys somewhere on Alpine. I got off my bike to pet the donkey. Well, this horse was completely enraged and came storming over, demanding that I pet him, too. The demands placed upon me to satisfy every living creature. It's exhausting. At the lunch stop, people came up to me and said, "Oh, the horse whisperer." I kid you not.

Lookey, they know I'm doing the ride! A sign just for me. At the lunch stop, I ran into Lisa, another Low Key Hillclimb participant and one hot woman! It was great to see her. The food and the volunteers were outstanding. Thank you Western Wheelers.

On Stage Road, the fog blew in. The Photocrazy photographer was at the top. He told me that I could turn around and get more shots if I'd like. What a guy! At The Bike Hut, I ran into Bill Bushnell and Janet Martinez. Oh my God, the divine Ms. M spoke to me and again on the Tunitas Creek climb! She's a babe. An inspiration.

While on Tunitas Creek, a nice looking fella (who I later learned last did the Low Key Hillclimbs 2 years ago), approached me and said, "I like your blog." I practically toppled over. A fan other than my mother.

What a day. Running into friends. Men cheering me on. Men flirting, I mean, talking to me. Seeing The Boyfriend. He makes me feel all warm and fuzzy.

Alas, I was 26 minutes slower than last year's time. I don't know if this is due to the warm weather, the hesitation in descending after my bike accident, being out of shape, or flirting too much..... In the end, who cares.

Just the stats:

67 miles
6 hrs. 26 min.
10.4 mph avg
30 mph descent

Sunday, May 30, 2010

The Girl in the Pigtails

"I know you! You're the girl in the pigtails who I saw yesterday on Sand Hill Road." And that is how today's bike ride turned into something quite unexpected.

The plan (I always have a plan that I generally ignore) was to bike Piedmont to Old Calaveras (pictured above) over to The Wall and Calaveras and then back to Felter and down Sierra.

I ended up walking the hardest part of Old Calaveras (the beginning). My calf muscles apparently were dead and I was already drenched in sweat.

Lookey what I saw on Old Calaveras -- these two rodents who thought they'd go after the big bird. It was hysterical watching the scene. I made it up the rest of the climb.

At Downing and Felter, I met these two guys ... and that's when the adventure began. Small world eh to run into someone who saw you biking the day before. They invited me to explore Marsh Road with them. It's on Felter, the next left after passing The Wall exit. Wow, what a fun road that leads nowhere. 2 miles mostly descending that leads you closer to the reservoir. The breeze felt wonderful. Of course the climb back didn't. The guys were swell and I may have recruited them to join the 2010 Low Key Hill Climbs!