Sunday, October 13, 2013

"Momma says stupid is as stupid does."

Mississippi River at Bonnet Carré Spillway
"Momma says stupid is as stupid does." -- Forrest Gump

 With Rich out of town and being keenly aware of Vega's unreliability, I decided Saturday evening not to ride the Giro. Sunday morning I toyed with the idea of doing nothing, but I was up early, started feeling guilty, and at the last minute headed to the levee with a single bottle of water and loose plans to ride to the Old End or perhaps the Little Dip.

As I approached Oak and Leake I saw a couple of single cyclists on cruisers riding the top of the levee along Leake, so when I got up to the path I went downriver to check out whether it was open to Audubon Park. Barricades were still up, but the path was mostly clear save for some big planks put across to move tracked machinery to the batture. Anyway, as I was heading back upriver I could see a small group on Oak so I softed it until they caught me to see if I might want to ride with them.

On the back of the group were R. Aubrey, J. Jordan , and S. Silbert. I didn't know the other guys, but the winds were dead calm so I figured my chances of being knocked down by somebody were somewhat reduced, and I jumped on.

The pace was a very manageable 22 - 24 mph. My only criticism was that everyone was insisting on pulling for a mile. I don't mean they were taking long pulls; I mean they were pulling for a measured mile, and, of course, I felt compelled to do the same. Jordan and a couple of other guys got out at the Little Dip, but I still felt good and thought I'd stick until the Big Dip. I can't offer any explanation for why I didn't turn at the Big Dip, I just didn't. Nearing Ormond I started to sit up but the other three riders didn't alter their cadence one iota. Okay, I recalled that sometimes this group goes to the absolute end which, as I remembered, is about another mile upriver. At that point, I reckoned it was better to hang and ride back with help rather than alone. Well, there are two or three more dips upriver of the Big Dip, and the path goes all the way to the Bonnet Carré Spillway.

So, here's the stupid part: having had no breakfast, having no food with me, and with nothing in my stomach but water and whatever remained of the soft-shell crab from a 6 pm seating at Dominique's the night before, I found myself 30 miles from home (I now know it is precisely 60 miles from my driveway to the middle of the spillway and back), out of water, watching these three guys moving their full bottles to front cages and chewing on Cliff Bars. Right, I know, stupid.

At model airplane area of Bonnet Carré Spillway
The guy with the Romeo kit, name of Rodney, I think, is pretty strong and reminds me of Bourgeois with a good disposition.

Fortunately, Scott had money and I was able to get Powerade in St. Rose. It was a good ride: the long pulls and extra miles left me as ragged as any Giro without any danger of being left out in the marshes of the far reaches of New Orleans East.

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