Tonight was our first ride of the season. It’s great that we even have a ‘season’. As if we’re professionals. No we’re not but we have a lot of fun, being in various seasons in here in Austin. Fall/Winter/Spring are running seasons. Summer is triathlon for those who are too chicken to run long distances. Or do something different.
So we had plans to meet over at Northwest Park over off Shoal Creek and Anderson or just south of that. When I drove out of work, Cha messaged saying she had a flat. I was fretting all day about this ride. I hadn’t been on my bike since June and I’m an awful biker. I’m slow to get on and off and nervous. And I was planning on riding over by myself, something I rarely do because I’m scared to ride with traffic.
Got home, pumped the bike. Prayed I didn’t have a flat, which I didn’t. Even the act of pumping air felt so alien. Anyway, got on the bike and I had to remind myself how the gears worked. As I pedaled down Shoal Creek, one of the most popular road bike routes in Austin, I rode past scores of bikers. Was a lovely evening to be riding. In between stressing over stop signs, wondering when my tires would pop, and crashing into traffic, I really began enjoying my ride a lot. I began considering doing this more often. Perhaps even try biking to work. Which is crazy, needs too much planning and probably subject for another post.
Well, I finally made it to the park’s parking lot. Cha was halfway through fixing her flat. Big day for her. By the time I got there, she had changed the tube (Vishy was giving her instructions). She was trying to put the tire back. I helped her do it but she did most of it. We used the plastic object to squeeze it back in but the last part was tough but somehow we managed after huffing and puffing. Sha had arrived by then, with cobwebs in her helmet and race bib still on the bike from last year! Yeah, didn’t I say something about ‘seasons’? After we put the wheel together we had to fix it back on the bike. That didn’t turn out to be so easy. Tried with the spoke but then the chain was wrong. Finally a kind gentleman passing by had to be goaded into helping. The first thing he did, was flip the bike around and place it on the seat and then pulled back some lever part of the chain to fix it. Voila! We were done! Only at 7.45 pm. So we rode around the neighboring streets for about 20-25 minutes by which time it was quite dark.
And then we went to dinner and did what girls do at dinner :).