Friday, April 22, 2016

There's a bike ride... and then there's a bike ride!!

          After our snow storm last week I was happier than a pig in mud to finally get out on a bike trail again.  My first "real" bike ride of the season was on the University Parks Trail, which stretches from the University of Toledo all the way to King road in Sylvania.  Many bike trails run along railways; most of them no longer used by trains.  This trail is no exception; however, this day there was actually a train sitting idle on the track.  This was very rare to see and I made sure to take pictures of of it.
     My cousin down in Florida mentioned he was going on a bike ride that day as well and told me he would send pics.  The picture at the top of the page was what I sent him and I thought the train in the background was a nice touch...

     Well, the picture below was the one he sent me...  now this is a bike ride!!

          I guess this was a case of what you don't know won't hurt you.  The fact that I had a nice sunny warm day and three other people to take the ride with me was more than enough to make it a great ride:)
     I told you I have my safe parks, and then the bike trails that I save for times that I have riding buddies just in case... well this day was a "just in case" day...

     You can see the trail was swarming with others who had the same idea as I did.  I know they say it's just like riding a bike... but for some reason that first real ride of the season doesn't always go as smoothly as I would like.  

     Looking below you might see someone who is very seasoned and invincible on the trails.
        But someone needs to tell my crazy brain that...

     I managed to make it all the way to the end of the trail unscathed; but on the way back was when it started getting "interesting".  

    By mid season my brain and I usually have the start-ups at intersections thing figured out, but this was the first time of the season, and we weren't on the same page yet... 

         I sometimes get lucky and time the traffic lights perfect and never break my stride.  But this time I was forced to stop.  Of course, when the walk light began to flash and I began to cross the intersection my stubborn leg didn't get the memo.  As I was half way across my brain told my right foot to get on the peddle but instead it pushed the pedal backwards, forcing me to stop dead in my tracks, right in the middle of the intersection. I had to put both feet down, bring the left pedal back up and start over.

     I know the people in the cars watching me were yelling "What the heck is she doing?? She obviously knows how to ride a bike!! I mean, she has all the gear..."

     I'm thinking about wearing a sign that says "caution, this cyclist makes random stops in the middle of the intersection for absolutely no apparent reason..."

     So after I made my way to the other side of the intersection, and tucked my heart back into my chest, I figured the rest of the ride would surely be smooth sailing.

You would think but no...
     As I attempted to change gears so I could catch the others my chain jumped the ring.  As you know, if the chain comes off you can pedal all you want, but the bike goes nowhere.  But trying not to break my stride I gave it a try... now I found myself with a chain wedged between the rings and it was my riding buddies who also had to break their stride.  But this is why riding buddies are a good thing...

     All in all I would say this ride could have gone worse, and the good news is I'm now prepared for all the other mishaps that come up down the road.

     I was just glad to finally get back out on a real bike ride again and as we know, it isn't a true bike ride without a great story.  And this my friends... was a bike ride!

Have a great day!!


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