Thursday, December 31, 2009

2009 In Short Review

January 1, 2009, I started off the year with a mtb ride at Tsali with AndyThis year has been pretty good in general - not what I wanted as far as riding, but I've learned that there are more important things in life than cycling 24/7.  *shrugs*  Guess that happens when you fall in love, eh? :)

I had great plans for riding this year and the first half of the year went well.  The second half not so well, as far as cycling is concerned.  I trained hard for my main ride of 2009 - Assault on Mt Mitchell - and I did really well.  Finished in 9:08hr total time (although my PT has almost an hour less) but that could have been closer to 8 hours if I had not spent so much time at the rest stops.  Oh well.  It is what it is.  Next year, rest stop time management will be one of the key things to work on.

I became a grandmother in March (3/17/2009)!  How can I be a grandmother????  I'm only 44yr old!! :)  I haven't been able to see the grandson as much as I would like to, but maybe next year I can see more of him.   From the conversations with my daughter, he is growing like a weed....he's wearing 18-24mo clothing, weighs 25 pounds (as of this week), and is pretty tall for his age (9 mo).  

I met a really nice man, from would you believe, an internet bicycling forum. :)  I met Hank in March, a week after becoming a grandma.  We talked for almost 2 months via emails & phone before finally meeting each other the day after AoMM.  Wow.  This guy is very special to me.  It's not been an easy relationship due to the fact that we are 283.7mi or a 4 hour drive/2.5-3.5 hour flight apart and has very weird days off, but we've managed so far.  Hank lives in Greenville, SC and I have spent quite a bit of time in the area.  I really like it down there - wish there were some way I could be there more often than I am.  But, I wouldn't trade any of the past 6 or 7 months of our relationship for cycling.....what does that say??  There are more important things in one's life than cycling??   Yea, there are.  I don't know where we're headed in the next year, but I'm in it for the duration.  (if you're reading this Babe...I love you). :)

I got my first cold in over 3yrs towards the end of June.  By the 2nd week of July, I was full blown bronchitis.  Meh, I said.  I can still ride with Dallas and my Hammer guys (who I had been riding with since probably around April) once or twice a week.  Right.  I picked the fast night (Tuesdays) to ride and that was about all I could do until the weekends.  I should have just taken a little time off the bike and let my lungs heal properly, but noooooooo.....I had to continue riding.  This wasn't good.  It affected the remainder of my year, for cycling.  

I managed to drag myself up to Lancaster, Pennsylvania the weekend of August 15 for the Covered Bridge Metric.  I had a great time, met some great people.  Not sure if I'll do the ride again next year, but I might, if I'm not otherwise off on some adventure. :)  (Still suffering the lingering affects of the bronchitis....)

The remainder of the year, after CBM, was spent riding with Dallas and traveling to Greenville. :)   Hank and I were able to see the US Cycling Road Race at the end of August - we were camped out at the top of Paris Mountain.  I saw George Hincapie. :)  *drool*  It was a great weekend, of course any weekend in Greenville has been great. :) 

I also spent 5 days out in the Sacramento, CA area mid October.  Met some more of my online biking friends, had lots of great rides.  Foxy's Fall Century was a great year, I will bring my own bike for the ride so that I don't suffer from such butt pain!!! /eek/  If there were somewhere in California that I thought I might be able to live in, the Sacramento area would be at the top of my list. :)

I planned on riding the fall cx races, but my lack of cycling in general really sent that idea down the drain.  Raced a couple of races, but realized I shouldn't pay registration fees/gas for just going out to have a little fun.  So, I raced, 3 or 4 races and called it good.  Modified the cx bike to a more mtb style and absolutely love the bike now.  I had thoughts of doing the Winter Cx Series, but my most recent injuries negate that.

So, we are now almost current....Broke my right thumb and have a Grade 1 AC Separation of the left shoulder due to wild cats attacking me on my way home (riding the cx bike) and causing me to crash less than 0.5mi from my house.  Those dang cats almost licked me to death! LOL.

And, here I am....making the last post for this year and thinking about what I want to do next year.....AoMM is still one of my goals for next year.   There are a few rides prior to that one I would like to do - if they mesh with my training plan for AoMM.  I have plans to do something with Hank next year - a tour.  No other info on that at this time, but I'll post up something when it's appropriate.  I want to get back to doing some day hikes or several long (a week or more maybe?) weekend hikes.  I'm really interested in hiking all or part of the Foothills Trail.  A ride of the whole BRP is on the list too.  Not sure if it will happen this year or not, but we'll see.

I'm not sure on my final yearly mileage....I sort of quit keeping track of it when I got sick and was only riding, maybe, 2x per week.  I think it might be around 3500-4000mi.  4000 miles if I'm lucky really.  Oh well.  Doesn't really matter in the larger scheme of things, now does it?

It's time to, as my good friend Martin said to me - "Enjoy the ride.  Ride for the enjoyment."

Follow Up

Saw my ortho this morning for a 1 week check up.  X-rays of thumb and shoulder - the break in the thumb is barely visible, there are no hairline fractures or breaks of any kind in the shoulder.  I am to continue wearing the brace on the thumb and use the arm sling as necessary.  Doctor said that a Grade 1 separation can be way more painful than a Grade 3 simply because with the Grade 3, the ligaments are totally torn apart and not being stretched - so less painful.  With the Grade 1, the ligament is stretched (maybe a slight tear also), but will be extremely sore to the touch.  And, boy is it sore.

So, wear the brace for the thumb for 3 more weeks, do the ROM and strength exercises for the shoulder and get better ASAP.  Hopefully, this will be my last injury/illness for this year. /rolleyes/

Doctor didn't say I couldn't ride my bike, so I'm going to try and ride outside some on the weekends, as the weather permits and hit the trainer during the weeknights until March 14, when the time changes.....

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Adventures in Cycling

I had a Christmas party of a co-worker to attend this past Saturday.  It is a short 1.3mi to the co-worker's house and I had the bright idea that I would ride my cross bike there.  It was cold, around 34F when I left the house around 7pm for the short ride over.

On the way over, I saw that there was a bit of wet pavement (mixed with the pine straw) near the edge of the road at Barber Mill, and made note of that - not to ride in that area on the way home.  The party was great - good friends & food.  I left around 11:30pm, and did just fine - the light on the bike is super bright.  But, I totally forgot about that mental note I was supposed to remember.  :(  Took the turn a bit to cocky/brave/fast, right through the pine straw and wet road.  I assume it was ice there because I know the temps had to be lower.  Whatever.  It happened very quickly - down I went on the left side.  Landed on my left shoulder and head.

I lay there for a little bit, thinking "boy, that hurt like hell", got back up on the bike and rode the 0.5mi on home.  I was pretty sore already, had a bit of trouble getting the sweater off but finally managed to and went to bed.  The next morning, I was really sore.  Couldn't move my left arm a lot and my right thumb was tender in the area closer to my wrist.  I waffled about going to urgent care on Sunday or waiting until Monday to see my normal doctor.  Finally decided to go to urgent care.  The doctor took x-rays and told me the bad news.  I felt like, after spending most of Sunday researching, I had an AC Separation, probably grade 1 and was really hoping just a sprained thumb (it didn't hurt near as bad as when I broke the left one in January).  No such luck or so that doctor thought....

The doctor told me that I had broken my collarbone and thumb.  The x-ray of the collarbone did look bad - like a diagonal break, almost a compound fracture.  The thumb was a bit harder to see, but eventually did.  (They didn't take very good x-rays at the urgent care).  So, I left the urgent care with a splint on my right thumb and my left arm in a sling, with a prescription for Vicodin.  

Made an appointment with the ortho Monday morning...Dr. Curzan at Garner Orthopaedics.  He looked at the x-rays and said there was no break in the collarbone - it looked fine.  He said that I did indeed have a Grade 1 AC Separation and broken thumb.  There isn't much to do for the AC injury - RICE and then exercises to regain ROM and strength.  The thumb was not cast either.  He said as long as I could wear the brace, he felt that would be sufficient.  Will go back next Thursday to check the shoulder and x-ray the thumb to make sure it's aligned properly.  I should be good to go in about 4wks.

That is such a relief.  I was all bummed out Sunday evening after the urgent care doctor told me it could be anywhere from a minimum of 6wks to 12wks for the collarbone to heal.  That would totally screw my AoMM training up.  Fortunately, I will be able to start my training the middle to latter part of January.

I have an appointment to see my PT on Thursday for 1 or 2 visits to get me started in the right direction for regaining ROM and strength in the shoulder.  Off the bike (outside I suppose) for 3-4 wks, but will be on the trainer doing some fat burning base miles/time.  I'm also planning on getting out to Umstead for some hiking and do some core workouts to build up the core a bit.

So, seems like I dodged a bullet this more riding to parties for me!  I'll stick to normal rides from now on.

Here are the 2 x-rays from the urgent care:


this is a zoomed in view of my shoulder....the doctor explained that the difference in the image color was due to the densities of the bone.  The part that looks like it's getting ready to poke out of my shoulder is not a break - the other end of the bone is just a lighter image, making it seem like it's broke.  Or so says Dr Curzan...

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

The Bridges of Greenville County, SC

Addenum to the weekend adventures - Adventures in Flying My flight from RDU to GSP took me to IAD (Dulles, yes, up to Washington, DC to then fly down to Greenville, SC).  The departure time from RDU on Saturday morning was to be at 6:10am.  But.  Yes, there is a "but".  Taxied out to have a bit of frost taken off the wings, but the de-icing truck was broke.  So, there we sat, burning fuel.  Used up so much that we had to turn around and re-fuel, then back to the de-icing truck, which was now operational.  Bad thing, though, it was now around 8am.  My connecting flight in DC had a departure of 8:09am.  Yep.  Missed that connection.

Arrive in DC around 9:40am, United automatically rebooked me on the next available flight, which was to depart at 12:21pm.  Hanging out in IAD when I should have already been in G'ville (and, I would have considering I was up at 3am and could have driven down there...).  Time to board the plane at 12pm and what do we hear???  Flight 7896 from IAD to GSP has been delayed until 1:45pm.  OMFG.  I'm so pissed.  Missing all day Saturday with the bf and spending my time in an airport.  So, I give the bf a call and tell him to just go on to work at 3:30 because I doubt I will be there by then and will just catch a cab.

The fying gods must have been looking out for me this flight touched down at 2:45pm.  I swear, if there had been any old ladies/children to get in my way on the way to pick my bag up and meet the bf, I would have knocked them over & out of my way! :)  We had just enough time to get me home, say "hi" and then he left for work.

The rest of the weekend was as much quality time with the bf as possible since we don't see each other that often (working on a solution to that though).  I planned on flying back home Tuesday morning.  Well, guess what??  Dense fog in the G'ville area.  My plane is circling the airport waiting to land and we now hear this - "if the plane cannot land in the next 10-15min, the plane will be diverted to Columbia".  No mention of what plane we would be on to IAD.  Grrrrrrrrrr.  And, the flight from IAD to RDU, departing at 12:21pm, was already delayed for an hour.

My plans of getting back to Raleigh and working for 3-4hr went out the door.  All I wanted was to get home.  Finally arrived at RDU around 2pm, picked up the bag, headed home.  Well, I have one more surprise...while unpacking, I find a note card from TSA - my bag was randomly selected to be searched.  I think next time, I'll just drive. :)

So, the bf flew me down to Greenville for the weekend (this past weekend - Saturday thru Tuesday) and on Monday, he took me to see the only original covered bridge left in South Carolina and the oldest intact bridge remaining (1820).

The first one we stopped at was Campbell's Covered Bridge.  There has been a few improvements to the area around the bridge, a few picnic tables, a walking trail, and some wood fencing near the bridge.  Here are a few pictures we took:

Interior of the covered bridge

Looking upstream. Streambed is all bedrock.



Structure Diagram & Description

It was pretty neat to see this.  I will have to do some research and see if there is anything similar in and around Johnston County.

The Poinsett Bridge (a very cool Youtube video about the bridge

The pictures....

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Ice, Ice, Baby!

So, ole Dallas wanted to meet at Legend Mtb Park this afternoon for an "easy" ride.  Uh huh.  When will I learn.  He learned from the best - LJ.  :)

Met him there a little after 2pm, put my pedals on one of his mtb's and off we go.  Now, remember....I haven't ridden a mtb in probably a year, I was riding an unfamiliar bike (though it doesn't matter since I hadn't ridden in so long), and....this park is NOT easy/beginner friendly.

Off we go....I do ok until we reach the first big downhill...we stop at the top and he tells me that he's going to go down it the way (line) he wants me to go.  Uh huh.  I try.  But on the way down, left foot unclipped, I grab a handful of front brake.  Uh Oh.  I didn't hit the ground but the bike did. :)  Walk the rest of that mess.  In fact, I walked quite a bit due to lack of confidence/losing my momentum on the uphills.  Some how or another I bang my left knee on the handlebars on an uphill and will have a nice bruise from that too.  I do so-so until............the big roots.

The big roots in a slight right hand/straight/downhill (very slight downhill) section.  Not enough speed to carry me through and yep...I go down.  On the drive side, on my right side.  OMG.  That hurt.  A few choice, but somewhat lady-like words were said, repeatedly.  Hurt.  Ouch.  2 huge goose-eggs popped up on my leg just above my knee.  While laying there on the ground, I could feel my leg twitching in pain.   Finally, I managed to get untangled from the bike and walk around a bit.  I told Dallas that I hope we are about done with this, but he says he has no idea how to get out of there....every time he comes over to ride that park, he gets lost.  /roll eyes/  I tell him that the road is just "over there" and that's where I'm going.  We exit the trails and head back to the car.

Ankle and the meaty part of my right thumb hurt the worst right now.  A bit of ice should help out.

So.....will I go mtb'ing with Dallas again?  Yep.  BUT....we will have to enjoy the Harris Lake trails a few times to let me build my confidence/skills up before I will go back to Legened. my butt is sore from yesterday's 74mi ride and my right knee/ankle/thumb area/left knee is sore.  It will be interesting to see how I feel in the morning.  Planned on a road ride at lunch tomorrow.  Know what?  That road ride will happen....HTFU. :)

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Long, Windy, Got Left By The Guys Ride :)

I've been doing the cx races lately, but decided after last weeks race that I may not do all of those in the Fall series due to race/gas costs.  At $23 registration fee and $30-60 on gas (depends on driving distance to race), it's just getting a little more expensive to do.  Sure, it's fun, but I'm not going to win any races and will most likely always place in the 12-20, I'm going to save my $$ for my Epic Ride next year.

That being said, it was to be a nice day today, albiet a bit windy and I mentioned to Martin that I would come out and ride with the "Irregulars".  He had a 70mi route planned and I didn't see any reason why I couldn't do that.  Uh-huh.  I must have forgotten that I hadn't ridden that kind of distance in a couple months.  My eyes were definitely bigger than my legs.  Or my butt.  

I'll just make it short 'n sweet for right now, but will come back when I'm not so damn tired to complete the write up....I'll leave you with the ending............

Just gonna leave it at, I rode an extra 4mi because the guys dropped my butt like a red hot coal once we turned onto Ghoston...I knew they would, as I'm now a slug when it comes to climbing, but I really thought they'd wait on me at the next turn.  Guess I thought wrong.  I got to the next turn and the guys were no where to be found.  OK.  I waited around for a couple minutes, trying to remember which way to go - left or right.  I just couldn't remember, so I went left.  Wrong.  Rode about 2mi in the wrong direction, realized this didn't look familiar and turned around.  Back on the route to BJP and I didn't think I would EVER get back to my car.  Very tired.

Finally made it back, about 15min behind the guys.  That's all for now...I have a couple pictures to upload too.


Monday, November 2, 2009


No NCCX #3 race in Boone for me on Sunday.  A bout of EIA even before I could warm up.  The ride from my car down to registration and back up to my car invoked the EIA.  That's seemed like an awfully hard course, given the rain and mud.  I would've done the race had I been able to breathe.

This week will be spin classes on Tuesday/Thursday at Inside-Out Sports and a cross ride on Wednesday from IOS to Umstead.  Gonna check about getting an 11-28 instead of the 12-25 currently on teh bike.  Dallas thinks this will be a tremendous help with the climbing and I'm tending to agree.  Up next is 2 races this weekend - Charlotte and Salisbury.  Guess I'm in for both after I get the cassette changed out....damn, I suck at cx racing.  Oh well, it is pretty fun!

Not much else going on right now....major ride announcement coming in the near future, don't ask.  I'll let the followers know when it's time, but until then...just guess. :)

Sunday, October 25, 2009

NCCX Race #2

I don't think this will be a long post....I'm tired and my legs hurt a bit after the race this afternoon.  I arrived around 11am and hadn't been there more than maybe 5min when Dallas rolls up.  We chat for a bit then he goes to change into street clothes while I get my bike/stuff ready.  We meet back up near registration, then just hang out watching the ongoing race.

He tells me about a few places to watch out for and then I head out to get in a practice lap or two.  The course isn't really all that bad - there's a section near the last part of the course, near the finish, that is a very short/steep uphill and a right-hand off camber turn in another section.  The first practice lap, I wasn't prepared for that short hill and had to unclip & walk.  Made it through 1.5 laps and then lined up for the race.

I did pretty well for the first 2 laps, but going hard & fast in cool air will bring on the exercise induced asthma that I've had some trouble with previously.  I haven't had much trouble with that in over a year, so I wasn't really expecting any trouble.  But, hit me and I had to just slow down.  Crap.  And, I was doing pretty well, hanging with a couple other women, passing a few of them.  I just had to slow down and ride easier.  Oh well.  Then there's "That Hill".  I climbed it 3 times, each one harder than the last, but made somewhat easier by the fact that there were so many spectators in that area, encouraging you to dig deeper, telling you that you can do it, you're almost there! that there was no way I was going to unclip.  

So, that's pretty much it for today's race.  I'll be very surprised if I'm not DFL for this race.  Dallas didn't seem to think I would be when I talked to him afterwards, but I'm not so sure.  I finished up, went and changed clothes, started to head over to the Start/Finish to see my placement, but, just was too tired.  I'll have to wait on the results to be posted online.

Next week, is Race #3 in Boone.  That one is probably going to be a hard one with mucho climbing, which I totally suck at, whether it's on the road or in the dirt.  No pictures today, other than the few I think Dallas took while I was racing.  I'll post them up once he sends them to me...

Pretty tired now - had a shower and I'm going to lay on the couch with my kitteh and watch a little football this afternoon. :)

Saturday, October 24, 2009

NCCX Race #1

First cyclocross race of the Fall Series was today at Bond Park in Cary.  I was waffling about going to the race Thursday & Friday, but talked to Dallas Friday evening and since he registered, I couldn't not register/race.  My hesitation was due to the fact that I haven't been on the cx bike since probably March and the weather forecast was calling for 60-80% rain for the time of my race (12:30pm).  But, rain is good in cyclocross!!!  Makes it a lot more fun, especially when you can get all muddy!

I arrived around 11:30-11:45a, enough time to get myself ready and over to Registration to pick-up my number, take a lap or two around the course.  It didn't really seem to be too hard of a course until you came upon the very steep downhill, leading to a long run-up and then back down.  Oh boy.  That run-up & back down was something else.  I just got off the bike and either pushed it or carried it up the hill, doing the same on the downhill side.  Just didn't have enough confidence to ride down, but stopped about 2/3 of the way down and hopped back on.  After that section, it was a long stretch running by the Start/Finish, rinse/repeat.

I get lined up for my race, near the front (learned my lesson about starting in the back from the Wolfpack Classic Road Race in February) and we're off!  Of course, I hammer with the group, but very fastly realize that I better knock it down a notch, as there is no way for me to keep that pace up for 30min.  I settle into a pace I think I can ride for 30min and just do my race.  I get passed by men, women, and children!  But, I just keep on going...2 laps down and when I get to the S/F, I'm told I have 2 more laps!  Holy Crap!! Thankfully, I knew I would only have one more at the pace I was going. 

So, last lap, coming out of the woods to the steep hilly section, there is a woman in pink ahead of me.  She gets to the top first, hesitates a bit and I catch up to her.  We both walk the bikes down the hill a bit, she hops on her's but has trouble and almost falls.  I'm on mine and see my hole....I get clipped in and then turn to the final's a sprint between Pink and myself and I beat her to the line by, maybe, half a wheel length.  YES!! :)

Afterwards, I meet Dallas and we talk about the race a bit, then I go change, check the results and discover that I am not DFL!!!  Awesome, because I was figuring that I might be last or next to last.  I placed 16th out of 19 women in the CX4 race.   Hang around for a bit to get pictures of the fast guys, then head on home.

Tomorrow, I'll be back at it for the 2nd race of the series. 

Pictures from the race:








And, finally, the pizza I made for my lunch/supper this evening.  Spicy Italian Sausage, sauteed peppers/mushrooms/zucchini, spinach, jalapeno's, fresh mozzarella, and thinly sliced roma tomatoes.

Sacramento, CA: Last Day

My last day in California was a fairly lazy one.  My butt still hurt and not a one of us wanted to get on a bike this day.  Mid-morning breakfast of a "pie" made, again, by Cook Extraordinaire Chris.  It was made of diced potatoes, leftover veggies from the other night and on top of all that, he added 6 eggs.  The potatoes were sauteed/cooked, the veggies added and eggs, covering to cook the eggs.  Yummy!!!!  Wish I had someone to cook like that for me, though, I like to cook well enough, that I could be the Cook Extraordinaire for someone.  I forgot to get a picture of breakfast. 

After breakfast, all of us were working on our respective blogs/reports and just being pretty dang lazy.  Chris and Deb took the dogs for a long walk around 12:30-1pm while I remained home working (or attempting to) on the blog...once they returned home, I left and took a drive to Old Sacramento/Sacramento for some touristy stuff.

This first picture is for my friend Vega Vixen:

The rest are from various places around Old Sacramento...







I thought, after visiting Old Sacramento, that since I was basically "in" Sacramento, I would find my way to downtown and get a few pictures of the Capital Building and maybe see if Arnold was home (he wasn't home).










Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Sacramento, CA: Day Four/Foxy's Ride's my take on Foxy's ride....I'll have to edit/add more (later tonight) because I posted this in the NorCal subforum of BF..........

I really had plans to do the full ride, but even though I brought my saddle & pedals and Chris & I set his bike up to the measurements from my Ruby and Fuji (he rides a 54 and i ride a 52), I had some very serious butt pain.  OMG.  Even during and after my 200k in April and after AoMM, my butt never hurt as bad as it did during the ride up to the lunch rest stop.  I felt great, my legs felt great, but my butt!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! OMFG.  Hurt like a mo'fo and the thoughts of riding 45-50 more miles was just too painful to endure.  I'm sorry, but I just couldn't do it....Lesson learned from this - either ship your own bike or borrow teh correct size bike. 

That being said....the ride was great!!  The company was great!! It was so very nice to finally meet everyone. dauphin (John) - baybuh!!  You are pretty quiet!  Everyone was very strong and I was totally comfortable riding behind/with anyone in our group.   The route was fairly flat with a few rollers (similar to riding in the Wendell/Zebulon area here).  After the first water stop, we're going along and all of a sudden, I hear Chris coming up and saying that the next section of rollers was their favorite to ride...and, he started to blow by me!! Curtis jumped on and I was a tad slow to catch the Tandem Train.  But, I didn't let that deter me.  Down in the drops and I put out a really good sprint to catch up with them.  It was an awesome ride up & down those rollers.  Butt be damned!!  I'm riding this train while I can!

But, unfortunately, my butt just continued to hurt more and at one point I asked Chris & Deb if we had already passed the point where we could decide on the metric or the century.  Yes, we had.  Damn.  OK, well, I'll try to go on, but I'm not sure I can.  Oh yea...the Flat Fairy only visited us once on the ride too.  So, we finally reach the lunch stop and I have decided to SAG in.  Very disappointed because I wanted to do the climbs.  Oh well, maybe next year.

I bid farewell to my group, got the car keys from Chris and tried to find someone to tell me where to find SAG.  I was initially told that it would be 3pm before anyone would be able to take me back to the start.  Finally, a SAG wagon arrives, but the guy is unsure of whether he just takes our bikes back to the start/finish or does he take bikes and riders???  Yes, you take me and my bike!!!  There is another guy wanting a ride back due to bad cramps, then one more with some serious back problems from a previous injury last week (plus his friend).  We eventually get it all worked out, but we have to take the route back to the start/finish.  OK, whatever, just take me back.  Actually, that worked out pretty well because I was able to take a few pictures along the route and wouldn't have to come back for pictures.

We drove up Cardiac and I don't think I would have had any problems climbing it, would have been slow, but I could've done it had I not had the butt issues.  Finally arrived back at the S/F, went and found some food (2 kinds of pasta, salad, bread, soda, and an ice cream sandwich) and sat outside waiting on Chris & Deb to arrive.  They were about 30min behind me.

We sit outside, finish eating and lo 'n behold if bigbossman=bbm=John and bs=bikingshearer=Rich didn't show up.  bbm is better looking in person than his posted pictures.  I was sorta hoping to see that pretty red bike that he always takes pictures with - maybe another time.  And, bs is such the BS'r.  Had a great time sitting around listening to everyone tell their stories.  All great guys!

In the end....I had a great ride at Foxy's, albeit shortened, and I've had a wonderful time out here in NorCal.  I would really love to come back next year, bring my own bike and do the full ride.  We'll never know what ole wolfpack will be up to next year this time.....
Slideshow of the ride

Sacramento, CA: Day Three

Let's see....Friday was a busy day - getting a ride in and getting teh house cleaned up, food fixed in preparation of the Pre-Ride Par-tay!
Not really sure where we rode on Friday, but it was a very flat route through groves of walnut trees and open fields. Even though it was flat, the area around here is very pretty. I could see myself living out here if I ever decided to make a move to CA.

Riding through the walnut groves, we noticed LOTS of walnuts laying on the ground, but not many were close enough to the road for us to take. Being close to the road means they are on the DOT right-of-way and free for the taking. Or so one would think. So, we finally see some which are right next to the road and we stop to gather a few to take back with us, thinking we might offer them at the Par-tay. Well, guess who gets busted picking up walnuts off the edge of the road?? Yep - me. Some guy comes up in a pick-up and tells me to only take what I can eat. Well, duh. Does it look like I have a basket on my bike? No. And, you can only get so many into jersey pockets. And, you know what? They weren't all that good - they were still fairly green, so not too crunchy.

So, we left from there (picking up the walnuts) and headed on into Winters, CA for some lunch at Speedy Eddy's (think that was the name of the place). I wish I had taken some pictures of the town, but didn't think about it. Lunch was a Greek Chicken wrap, coleslaw & ice tea. This was very good and a large portion - so large, that I took half of the wrap back with us. I planned on eating it later that afternoon, but once we got back home, I was hungry - so that was gone pretty quickly.

The remainder of the afternoon was spent helping Deb & Chris around the house - cleaning up and making it presentable to the other guests we were expecting for the Par-tay. On the menu for the Par-tay was ribs, salad, rice, Pumpkin Chip cookies, some beer tasting.....

OMG. Chris can seriously cook! These ribs are/were to die for!! The meat just fell off the bones. was a TLO for the mouth! Everything was absolutely great. Diana (Overthere from BF), Curtis & Trisha (don't remember their BF names) were the only guests to make it - others either had something else come up or had to cancel at the last minute. That's ok...we had a great time! Curtis brought some beer and the beer tasting by the women - well, let's just say that was some of the nastiest beer I have ever had!! Yuck. The rest of the food/wine was exceptional.

So, that was pretty much Day Three - another fun and exciting time. Stayed up a bit too late and had one or two too many glasses of wine.

Slideshow of the ride with Chris & Deb Friday afternoon and a couple of pics from the party...

Beau & Ollie having dinner:

Good Beer (i.e. not hoppy!!):



And, nothing left: