Friday, August 12, 2016

Just because it doesn't seem big to others, doesn't mean it isn't one of my biggest fears.

     It seems like every bike ride in the past has been all about riding, and it was up to me to sneak in the scenery on my own time.

     But this past ride turned out to be organized by one of my riding buddies, Tom, and included was a tour of Bowling Green Ohio.

     There were 13 of us that met at the trail head of the Slippery Elm Trail. 
    I've been on that trail a few times before, but anytime I get the chance to go on a bike ride I'm not usually picky about where it is, as long as it's paved.

     This trail went under the highway; which is so cool!  It's not often I get to ride underneath freeway traffic and end up in one piece.

     On this ride I'll admit, there were certainly a lot of firsts for me. One lady was around eighty something and could probably ride circle around me. Another guy actually had a child carrier on the back of his bike, and he was toting a two year old little girl and an eight week old puppy.  If there was room for one more I might have asked to join them:) 


   Unexpectedly to me, it wasn't long before Tom guided us off of the the Slippery Elm Trail, and we found ourselves crossing over I-75.  Surprisingly, we all got off our bikes to observe the on coming traffic; It's not often that you get to watch huge semi trucks barreling at you at seventy miles an hour.


     And no matter how old you are, that little kid in you comes out, in the hopes of making those truck drivers pull that all too familiar horn chain. Oh, Grow up!! Never!!

     In this photo below, Tom explained to us that this was a cemetery where years ago they buried people who had no money.  Those little posts lining the lot were marked with nothing more than a number, which sadly was the only record they had of their existence. Subsequently, they lived in a building they called "the poor house". I remember as a kid hearing my parents say if we didn't watch our money we would end up in "the poor house"  whoda known it really existed at one time?!?!
     At this point, this ride was very interesting, educational, enjoyable and absolutely well within my comfort zone.  Until Tom announced that we would be riding on a small patch of gravel...

     I've mentioned that riding on gravel with my road bike was something I would never, ever, do.  I have this huge fear of wiping out and being mutilated by the sharp rocks.  However, there were 12 others on this ride and I knew they weren't going to turn around just because I'm a little freaked out.

     Of course, you know one thing I'm not afraid of, and that is to ask the question, just how big is this "little patch".  Tom Assured me it was a very short distance.  I began picturing crossing over a gravel road at an intersection.  I could suck it up and cross it.
     Yikes!!  Tom's idea of a little patch and mine are so far off!! This "little patch" was about a mile long!  However, I had no choice but to ride on it.  But I was scared out of my wits!  In fact, I was as white as the ghosts in that cemetery we just left.

     One of the other riders commented that is can't be good for a road bike... now I'm imagining my skinny little tires getting punctured by a sharp piece of gravel, and getting a flat, and spinning out of control; which is one of my other worst fears!  ugh!!
    Now don't think for one second that I was taking this picture while riding; my hands practically had to be pried from my handle bars when I was finished.  I waited until I was at the end of this road, making sure I actually made it unscathed.  But you tell me... does this look like a "little patch" to you!?!? Right!?!?

     But I survived, and was able to cross one more thing off of my lists of "never would I ever"...

     Lastly, Tom took us through the campus of Bowling Green University, where we also got quite a history lesson while we were there.
     And we didn't even have to pay the astronomical tuition fee to get an education at BG:)
     The last stop Tom had on his agenda was to get ice cream, and to someone big on delayed gratification, it was a perfect ending to an amazing ride!  Why can't all rides be like this!? :) 

Have a great day!!


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